Meet your candidates!
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Meet Van Taylor running for U.S. House of Representatives, Texas District 3 as a republican.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background.
For the past eight years I have had the privilege to serve Collin County in the Texas Legislature, first as State Representative and currently as your State Senator. I have always maintained a 100% meeting policy with constituents and working together we have passed important policy solutions for our state. These include:
- Sweeping protections for victims of domestic violence, safeguarding our children from online sexual predators, and ending forced underage marriages in Texas.
- A Texas Constitutional Amendment making it easier for our military to vote while serving overseas, increasing military ballots 150%.
- Legislation closing a loophole preventing healthcare fraud and abuse saving local taxpayers millions.
- A prescription monitoring system aimed at curbing the prescription opioid epidemic.
- Legislation fighting the proliferation of toll roads.
- Sweeping ethics reform including revoking benefits from corrupt politicians.
- Truth in taxation rule, which forces politicians to state clearly in the first line of any bill if there is an attempt to raise taxes or fees, has been cited by Americans for Tax Reform as a successful blueprint for other states to implement.
In my day job I am a local small businessman at a real estate investment firm. Prior to that I served as a United States Marine. After volunteering for duty as a platoon commander with the Marine Corps’ C Company, 4th Reconnaissance Battalion, I deployed to Iraq, fighting with the 2nd Force Reconnaissance Company. There I had the honor of leading a platoon of brave Marines.
We were the first platoon into Iraq for our brigade and led a mission behind enemy lines that rescued 31 wounded Marines during the pitched Battle of An Nasiriyah. We accomplished every mission and by the grace of God returned every man home safely to their families. I returned home to the arms of the woman who wrote me a letter every day I was there and together my wife Anne and I are raising three daughters in Plano about a mile from where my great-grandfather farmed during the Great Depression.
Why are you running for office?
I am running for Congress for three reasons: Laura, Helen, and Susie (my daughters) and all the children in this great land. Throughout our nation’s history every generation has fought to leave a better America for the next. Sadly, we are on track to leave our children a nation buried beneath a mountain of debt with politicians and bureaucrats in Washington controlling even the most routine aspects of our lives. We are losing our freedom not to a tyrant – but to government itself. I refuse to accept this future for our children.
I believe America’s success story has volumes yet to be written and it is our duty to ensure the next generation inherits a nation just as strong, secure, and prosperous as previous generations have passed down throughout our history. America is at a tipping point. We must protect our liberty, restore the core mission of government, and renew the promise of the American Dream.
What makes you the most qualified person for this position?
In the State Legislature I have proven myself to be an effective conservative leader. I have taken tough votes and worked with our community to craft commonsense solutions to real problems. I know the legislative process and have a record of working with constituents on important bills to keep our area the very best place to live, work, and raise a family. Representing the people of House District 66 and Senate District 8 has also given me the opportunity to visit with thousands of constituents. My best legislative ideas come directly from the people and I look forward to continuing my 100% meeting policy.
For my commitment to defending freedom and serving our community, I am honored to have received the endorsement from an incredible coalition including over 95% of the local Republican precinct chairs, every Collin County state legislator going back to 1991, our Sheriff, numerous county elected officials, city councilmen, and school board members, Governor Greg Abbott, Former Governor Rick Perry, Senator Ted Cruz, Collin County Conservative Republicans, the Collin County Association of Relators, and so many more. Anne and I are truly humbled by the outpouring of support from community leaders rallying behind our message of bring the solutions we have pioneered here in Texas to Washington, D.C.
What issues are your top priorities? Name three.
Like a business or family, pressing issues are numerous and change often. In the Legislature I have been effective by gravitating towards whatever issues are moving so I could craft conservative solutions to those policy challenges and I will continue to look for those opportunities in the U.S. Congress. However, as I talk with constituents the three issues I hear all the time are:
1) Limiting the size and scope of government
2) Border security and illegal immigration
3) Continuing ongoing economic prosperity
Limiting the size and scope of government requires constant attention. Small, seemingly nonthreatening bills can have long negative effects if it opens the door for government to grow unchecked. In the Texas Senate I questioned all amendments and fought this government creep at every turn and will continue that diligence while supporting significant budget and spending reforms. As it relates to border security and illegal immigration I will use my experience serving as a Marine on the US / Mexican Border and a legislator from a border state to advocate for security, safety, and sovereignty. Finally on economy, jobs come from the private sector – not big government. Low taxes, fiscal responsibility, and a business-friendly climate are reasons why Texas is the national leader in job growth. In the Texas Legislature, I worked successfully to pass conservative, pro-growth policies and will take that same mindset to our nation’s Capitol.
What changes would you implement and how?
I am running for office to bring the same conservative solutions we have pioneered here in Texas to Washington, D.C. I would tackle this task the same way I have approached my time in the Texas Legislature: listening to the people, working hard, and forging coalitions to pass important policy solutions. In the Texas Senate I had a perfect attendance record on the Senate Floor casting all 8,000 votes and also maintained perfect committee attendance record. I got in early and stayed late studying the policies and communicating with constituents.
While being recognized as a top conservative in the Texas Senate, I was also able to work on a bipartisan basis to craft commonsense solutions. For example, before every Education Committee hearing I emailed our local districts copies of the bills up for discussion and maintained regular conference calls with our school districts. This resulted in legislation I authored and passed in consultation with local school board members.
What factors in your life have shaped your beliefs?
Representing the people of HD66 and SD8 has also given me the opportunity to visit with thousands of constituents. My best legislative ideas come directly from the people and I look forward to continuing my 100% meeting policy.
As a businessman and family man I know firsthand that government growth has an inverse relationship with personal liberty. The more government grows the less freedom we have. And finally, my time serving in combat offers me a perspective. While I have watched some legislators struggle with a tough vote I have always been relaxed doing what is right and knowing that in the worst-case scenario everyone will walk off the floor and go home to their families. This perspective can infuriate lobbyists and special interest groups but it allows me to always put the people and my values first.
What do you believe should be the function of government?
In Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations he described four core functions of government: national defense, public safety, infrastructure, and education. I believe these same core roles are still true today. Unfortunately, a common trick that big-government politicians try is to discuss funding for core functions of government at the end of grueling budget fights so lawmakers feel compelled to support it, rather than starting with what government is supposed to be doing. We can accomplish core functions by prioritizing spending – not raising taxes – while also creating meaningful budget restraints like we do in Texas such as the balance budget amendment, zero based budgeting, and meaningful spending caps. These reforms would promote future allocations towards the core functions of government.
Issues aside, at its core, government exists to secure our rights and represent the people. As a U.S. Marine I believe in mission statements and I take my mission statement for public office directly from the Declaration of Independence: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.” Simply, government was created to secure our rights and elected representatives work for the people. I am going to work hard to earn the trust of every voter, and if elected, I will continue to work with the people I serve to create a better future for our next generation and fight every day to safeguard our freedom.