Breaking the Washington culture of corruption
By Michael Cloud - Guest Column
Feb. 22, 2018 at 5:36 p.m.
Updated Feb. 23, 2018 at 6 a.m.
All of us living in the district were personally affected one way or another by Harvey. But Texans are not the kind of people that sit and wait when there is work to be done. We saw the need and got to work with our neighbors to face the challenges of rebuilding our communities.
In the same way, I did not wait when I saw the need for leadership in Congress. I got in this race in September and stepped up to challenge an entrenched incumbent. No one else filed to run until after the allegations which led to our Congressman's withdrawal from this race. I entered this race knowing it would be an uphill battle - but did so because it was the right thing to do.
We demand change in Washington, but we rarely see it. Politician after politician talks big at home, then goes to Washington and gets sucked into the system. Washington is broken, and we need a leader with the courage to take on the Washington culture of corruption.
Recent reports by the Victoria Advocate and KRIS TV uncovered that half of the candidates in this race either do not live in our district or have moved here in the last few weeks. I have lived, worked and voted continuously in our district for more than 20 years. I was married here, my kids were born here, I go to church here and I built my business here.
I have a proven record working hand-in-hand with the people of our district. I was elected four times as Republican County Chair in Victoria, where we turned the county from blue to red without compromising our conservative principles. And now I represent 21 counties on the State Republican Executive Committee.
As your congressman, I will work to preserve the constitutional conservative principles that have made the United States of America a great nation.
I will work to protect our Second Amendment rights, fund real border security, eliminate incentives for illegal immigration and extend to unborn babies the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I will work to lower the cost of healthcare by bringing back market-based principles and getting the federal government out of our personal healthcare decisions. And I will work to ensure that our veterans receive the first-class quality healthcare they have earned.
Our region is poised for an economic boom, with enormous potential in energy, ports, petrochemicals, agriculture, aquaculture, education and more. We need a representative who has lived and worked in our district and understands our community's challenges and opportunities. I will work with community leaders to ensure a favorable business climate, to attract new investment to our district and to make sure our residents receive the hurricane relief funds that Congress promised us.
One of my priorities will be establishing a federal Sunset Commission. A lot of the Washington bureaucracy exists because it has just always been around or because Congress has other things to think about. A sunset commission would recommend wasteful federal programs for Congress to eliminate. All agencies and programs would be set to expire on a certain date unless Congress specifically voted to reauthorize them - forcing our representatives to do their jobs.
Texas has a Sunset Commission that evaluates most state agencies every 12 years. The commission has been responsible for abolishing 85 agencies, saving the state nearly a billion dollars. But perhaps even more important is preventing the growth of government. If we could apply that kind of thinking to the federal level, we might finally be able to stem the tide of ever-expanding government.
As a small business owner, I know firsthand why we need to shrink the size of government and eliminate burdensome government regulations that reduce employment and hold back economic growth.
So I bring not just experience but the right kind of experience. All of my professional experience has been in the private sector, and all of my political experience has been at the grassroots level.
This is why our former Congressman Ron Paul endorsed me, calling me the kind of leader that our country desperately needs - principled, hardworking and trustworthy.
As a longtime voter in our district, I can tell you that we are not looking for another bureaucrat in Congress. We do not need more people looking for an easy path to a political career. And we do not want yet another congressman who will kick the can down the road and maintain the status quo. Now is a time for courage in our nation to take on the big challenges we face, so I ask for your vote, and I ask for your support in this campaign.
Michael Cloud is a candidate for the 27th U.S. Congressional District. He is a constitutional conservative and business owner from Victoria, where he and his family have lived for the past 20 years. He may be emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org, and you may follow his campaign at facebook.com/CloudforCongress.