Capitol Update: Landmark Pro-Life Legislation

May 18, 2021

Last week was a long one in Austin, with floor debates going late into the night several nights.  But I am committed to delivering conservative results for East Texas, which is what we have been seeing out of the Texas House.

Last week, the House debated and passed the Heartbeat Bill (HB 1515/SB 8), which I am proud to co-sponsor and support.  After several hours of debate the House passed the bill which would ban an abortion after an unborn baby’s heartbeat is detectable.  To date, an abortion is the only instance where it is not illegal to stop a beating human heart.  The Heartbeat Bill brings a much needed protection for the unborn in Texas.

We also passed HB 1280 which ban abortion in Texas in the event that the United States Supreme Court were to overrule its ruling in Roe vs. Wade.  This shows Texas’ continued commitment to life and our hope that the Supreme Court will come to share that commitment.

The House also passed HB 764 which would reduce high stakes STAAR testing.  While the testing would continue for diagnostic purposes, it would not be used to determine graduation requirements.  I have heard from many parents and educators about the stress caused by high stakes testing.  This bill will provide flexibility for school districts to ensure that their students are learning without the determinants of high stakes testing.

The House also passed HB 1505, which I am proud to author, which bring additional funds and help to expedite deployment of broadband internet in rural Texas.  We have seen the heightened need for high speed internet as work, school, court, doctor’s appointments and so many other daily functions have moved online.  Expediting rural broadband is one of the most important issues for rural Texas and I am proud to be leading the way in this effort.

It is great to hear from so many of you, letting me know what is important to you.  I want to encourage you to reach out to me about issues that concern you or legislation that you would like to see advanced.  I can be reached at 512-463-0556 or

In addition, my district director, Joe Buck Crisp, will be spending time each month in every county to meet with you about legislative concerns and to help with issues you may be having with the state government.  Please contact our Marshall office at 903-935-1141 if you would like to meet with Joe when he is in your town.