Early voting has begun in a special run-off election for Texas House District 123. Early voting ends Friday, Feb. 13, and the election itself will be Tuesday, Feb. 17.
The seat was held by Rep. Trey Martinez Fischer, who is is running for the Mayor of San Antonio.
The Democrat candidate is Diego Bernal, 40, is an attorney and consultant.
The Republican candidate is Nunzio Previtera, 62, is an insurance agent.
For Bernal, State House District 123 covers roughly the same territory as San Antonio City Council District 1 which he has resigned from.
Bernal wants to restore and expand funding for public schools to make them the best in the U.S. and to pay public school teachers what they deserve. He wants equal opportunities-in funding and curriculum-for all students, including economically disadvantaged, Special Education, Special Need and English Language Learner students. He proposes expanding state Pre-K programs to full-day offerings. He wants to end regulations that force teachers to “teach to the test.” He wants to control the cost of tuition for Texas public universities.
Bernal wants to expand Medicaid and closing the “coverage gap.” He wants to increase funding and access to women’s health services and reduce the child hunger crisis in Texas. He wants to expand programs to keep primary care doctors and medical students in San Antonio. He proposes bringing essential health services and information to the front door by using neighborhood community workers (promatoras). He will work to ensure our veterans get access to the healthcare and services they deserve.
Bernal wants to reate a true education pipeline so that every business can find the workforce it needs right here in San Antonio and make sure that small businesses receive state incentives and subsidies. He supports Support Equal Pay for Equal Work legislation to ensure women are treated fairly in the workplace. He wants to continue to support and grow San Antonio’s tech and clean energy economies, and sponsor events that introduce students to careers in new economies. He wants to enhance affordable childcare options for working families and single parents. He will fight for a minimum wage that allows workers to house and feed their families. He wants to strengthen laws against wage-theft to protect hourly, tipped and small-contract workers. He will work to provide tax credits to Texas small businesses that hire Texas veterans.
Bernal wants to rein in abusive payday and auto title lending practices, increase opportunities for working families to become home owners, and protect local law enforcement from the movement to turn them into immigration officers. He will fight for a minimum wage that allow workers to house and feed their families and proposes freezing property taxes for those living on a fixed income and expanding access to in-home care, so they are not forced into expensive nursing homes.
From the other candidate, Previtera says he will author legislation requiring public schools to work together with industry associations to create apprenticeship programs to train our students in trades such as masonry, electrical, heating and air conditioning, and nursing.
Taxes that are specified for a particular need cannot be diverted for other uses. The state lottery was supposed to fund only education. The gasoline tax was to fund only roads. I will introduce Legislation that puts a stop to the diversion of any taxes that were established for a specific purpose.
Previtera says he will not vote for any new taxes, nor will he vote for any existing taxes to be increased. The State of Texas has sufficient tax revenue to fund all the needs of Texas for the foreseeable future. “The majority of the residents of HD123 live from pay check to pay check or are retired, living on fixed incomes,” Previtera said. “We cannot afford any new taxes placed on the backs of HD123.”
Previtera says Obamacare is not affordable. “The 164 tax increases that fund Obamacare touch the wallets of every American,” he said. Small Businesses must be allowed access to group health plans without participation requirements. “Individual mandates must be abolished. We should all be allowed to buy only the coverage we need. Health insurance is not “One Size Fits All.”
Previtera will advocate for legislation that prevents any abortion that is not performed to save the life of the mother and prohibits any government agency or physician from withholding life-sustaining measures without the written consent of the patient or the patient’s medical power of attorney.