Central Texas voters will decide competitive congressional race
WACO, Texas (KWTX) - In just a few days, ballots will start to be counted in one of the biggest elections years, but the White House is not the only race on the ballot.
Some voters in Central Texas will also be choosing a candidate to represent them in the 25th congressional district.
Democrat Julie Oliver is running against four term Republican incumbent Roger Williams.
Oliver challenged Williams in 2018 and lost.
If she’s elected, Oliver has several goals for office including expanding Medicare and concentrating on renewable forms of energy to help with the climate crisis.
Williams also has some goals if he’s elected for another term in Congress. He wants to make the 2016 tax cuts permanent, and continue to make improvements at Fort Hood.
Williams said he would also like to bring back PPP loans and focus them on small businesses with fewer than 10 employees.
While the candidates have different goals, both Oliver and Williams said every vote counts.
“We vote for people to be our voice in Washington D.C., we vote for people to be our voice in Austin, so it is an incredibly powerful thing we have,” Oliver said.
“I’m excited about the voter turnout,” Williams said. “Because that’s the way we know what Texans want Texas and America to look like. If they don’t tell us, we don’t know.”
Voters will also have some more local races on the ballot.
Voters in parts of Bell and Lampasas County will be choosing a representative for the 54th Texas house district.
Republican state Rep. Brad Buckley currently holds the seat after being elected in 2018.
KeKe Williams is running against Buckley for the seat.
During his time campaigning, Buckley said he’s focused on what he was able to accomplish during the last legislative session in 2018. Buckley said he focused on improvements in education, like raising teacher pay and retirement. He said he’s also worked to improve women’s healthcare and end surprise medical billing.
Buckley said doing work in Austin is only part of the job, and it’s also about what he’s done the other part of the year. During the pandemic, Buckley said he’s helped his constituents access aid like PPP loans and unemployment.
If he’s re-elected, Buckley said his main goal is to protect the achievements he made in 2018. For a lot of his constituents, a big concern is education.
“What I’ve been doing as a member of the house appropriations committee is looking at the revenue estimates, looking at the challenges we’ll face, and how are we going to do that, how are we going to maintain funding for our public schools.”
Another concern for Buckley is making sure small businesses are able to access money and resources, especially as they’re recovering during the pandemic. Buckley said he also wants to look at the state of recovery from the pandemic, and focus on those mental health and education gaps.
Early voting in Texas ends on Friday. Polls are open from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m on Thursday and Friday for early voting, as well as on Nov. 3 for Election Day.
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