United States Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) stopped in Lubbock on Sunday as part of his weekend tour of West Texas.
Cruz joined Representative Jodey Arrington (R-TX, 19th District) to speak to constituents at the Bayer Museum of Agriculture.
The event, billed as a picnic, was not open to the media, but Cruz and Arrington answered press questions following their speeches.
“[Cruz] has been where we have the largest oil basin in the world and now he’s standing in the largest cotton patch in the world,” Arrington said, citing the senator’s visits to Odessa and Midland the previous day.
Cruz outlined his top priorities for 2017.
“Putting strong, principled conservatives on the Supreme Court. Honoring our commitment to repeal Obamacare and to drive down the cost of health insurance premiums. Regulatory reform, lifting the burdens on farmers and ranchers and small businesses. And tax reform, dramatically simplifying the tax code. Ideally I’d like to see a simple tax code, where we abolish the IRS,” Cruz said.
“If we do those four, 2017 will be an historic year and this is poised to be the most productive congress we have in decades. If we don’t get them done, I think it will be an enormous missed opportunity,” he added.
Cruz also shared his thoughts on the 2018 Farm Bill.
“I think a farm bill needs to have stability, needs to ensure continuity,” Cruz stated. “There’s no doubt that agriculture is right at the backbone of this country. Having food, and fiber stability and security, it’s critically important to West Texas, but it’s critically important to the whole country. We need to see a farm bill that has a robust crop insurance plan and that provides some steady continuity so that farmers are not just buffeted by rising and falling prices and uncertainty. We need stability so that farmers can plan from one year to the next and know what to expect. I think that’s an important issue. It’s one I’ll note that Jodey is a leader on in Congress. Even as a freshman in Congress he’s already taken a leading role on that. I think it’s important for Lubbock, and it’s important for West Texas.”
Arrington, who as a freshman in Congress has already been labeled a champion for agriculture producers by other representatives, also addressed the Farm Bill.
“We have to have a strong and reliable and responsible fiscally responsible farm bill for our ag producers there’s a lot of volatility in a global market place and we call ourselves a free market economy,” Arrington said. “The fact is, our tax cost our regulator costs are very burdensome not just throughout the country but relative to other countries we’re competing against.”
To hear more from their conversation, watch Talking Points on KAMC News, Sunday May 28, at 11:30 a.m. and 11:05 p.m.