Texas 22nd Congressional District: What you need to know about this important race

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HOUSTON – As the Texas primary elections on March 3 near, KPRC 2 is profiling some of the major races that local voters will decide.

One major race is for Texas Congressional District 22. Here’s what you need to know:

District 22 includes parts of Brazoria, Fort Bend, and Harris counties.

Map of TX-22 Congressional District (Wikipedia)

Who is running for this election?

Republican Candidates

Pierce Bush

Bush, the grandson of President George H.W. Bush and nephew of President George W. Bush, has endorsements from Rep. Pete Olson, former U.S. Rep. Ted Poe, and former Texas Rep. John Zerwas. The political newcomer is focused on economic policy and tweeted support for President Donald Trump’s economic agenda, saying he would “champion policies that place individuals above government so all can thrive.”

Troy Nehls

Troy Nehls

In his eight years as Fort Bend County Sheriff, Nehls said he has managed 826 staff members and a $79 million budget for Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office. He said he’s also cooperated with ICE officials in locking up and deporting over 2,500 criminal illegal immigrants as sheriff. Nehls said he will support Trump in building a border wall if elected. He said he also plans to protect the second amendment while focusing on the national debt and cutting spending.

Jon Camarillo

Jon Camarillo (Jon Camarillo's website)

Camarillo said he plans to fight to keep taxes low, reduce regulations and to rein in federal spending. He is pro-life and said he believes it is the “natural right of every person to possess the means to defend the things that matter most to them against violence and theft." He believes Texas should support border patrol agents and eliminate programs that “attract illegal immigrants to Texas.” Camarillo also wants to stop human traffickers from taking advantage of border security.

Douglas Haggard

Douglas Haggard (Douglas Haggard's website)

Haggard served for almost a decade as an Assistant District Attorney for Harris County. He was a chief prosecutor in both misdemeanor and district courts. Haggard said he supports law enforcement but understands what is needed for “more enlightened and effective” police officers in high-crime areas. Haggard is a fiscal conservative in favor of the border wall. He said he will fight for the balanced budget constitutional amendment that would include a line-item veto for the president. Haggard also advocates repeal of the income tax amendment and replacing it with a national sales tax.

Aaron Hermes

Aaron Hermes (Aaron Hermes' website)

Hermes believes the technology and systems currently used during voting are flawed. He believes safeguarding the process must be our “upmost priority.” He said that troops deserve the best equipment and medical care available, and plans to give them the tools and medical care they need “while also not supporting endless wars with unclear objectives.” Hermes said he would propose eliminating income tax completely for the bottom 25% to 50%+ of earners with tiered rates leading up to the first tax bracket.

Greg Hill

Greg Hill (Ballotpedia)

Hill focuses on his experience as a border patrol agent while emphasizing issues like immigration and the 2nd amendment. Hill said he supports a wall on the Mexican border, but also called for streamlining the immigration process and increasing the number of immigration judges that handle deportation and asylum cases.

Matt Hinton

Matt Hinton (Matt Hinton's website)

Hinton said he plans to fix issues with healthcare, taxes, the STOCK Act, and more. He said his plan for the healthcare system is to let all people with pre-existing conditions keep their current health insurance plan. “We will lock their premiums in place so that they cannot rise more than the current level of inflation,” he said. Then, he wants to let health insurance companies offer free-market health insurance like they did before the ACA was passed, which he said would lower premiums. Hinton wants to make tax cuts permanent. He said he believes the STOCK Act should be strengthened so that Members of Congress can be criminally prosecuted if they conduct stock trading based on their knowledge of what legislation they are about to pass.

Dan Mathews

Dan Mathews (Ballotpedia)

Mathews said he supports lower taxes and more jobs, a limited government and spending limit to relieve the deficit, tax credit to teachers, firefighters, police, emergency medical personnel, troops, and veterans, and making college tuition affordable. He said he believes in having strong national security and a strong border. He said he also supports Trump in his support of Israel.

Diana Miller

Diana Miller (Ballotpedia)

Miller said keeping District 22 residents safe is her priority. She believes in holding tech giants accountable when it comes to protecting children from online predators, cyberbullying and human trafficking. Miller also plans to focus on flood mitigation as she said the Brazos River Erosion study shows the community is at risk.

Brandon Penko

There is no information available online about this candidate.

Shandon Phan

Shandon Phan (Shandon Phan's website)

While in law school, Phan said he worked at the United States Attorney’s Office of District of Columbia, the United States Immigration Court, the United States Coast Guard’s Office of the Judge Advocate General and the International Republican Institute. He said he supports law enforcement and served on the Houston Police Department Community Advisory Committee. Phan said he believes in protecting the Constitution and “traditional American values.”

Bangar Reddy

Bangar Reddy (Bangar Reddy's website)

Reddy said he will champion limited government, address multi-regional flood mitigation and its impact on commerce and homes. He said he also wants to promote a climate that is “favorable to economic prosperity.” Reddy said he believes that “socialist ideology” and “socialist programs” are trying to "invade Texas by promoting big government and wasteful spending.”

Howard Lynn Steele Jr.

Howard Lynn Steele Jr. (Ballotpedia)

Steele said he plans to focus on issues like border security, human trafficking, school safety, the national debt, and the welfare of veterans. He is a federal litigator, native Houstonian and has served as the director and counsel for his homeowner’s association, he said. He has been recognized as one of the “Best Lawyers in America” by Forbes and said he is board certified in labor and employment law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.

Kathaleen Wall

Kathaleen Wall (Ballotpedia)

Wall’s experience includes working in the technology sector of business. She has donated to Republican candidates in the past, contributing over $1 million in the 2016 election cycle. Wall believes Trump needs a leader who will help him stop illegal immigration and supports his idea to build a border wall.

Joe Walz

Joe Walz (Joe Walz's website)

Walz said he is a lifelong resident of Fort Bend County. An Army veteran, Walz said he plans to fight for tax reform through fair tax or flat tax, demand a balanced budget amendment and eliminate the federal debt, work toward healthcare and health insurance reform, and border security.

Chris Fernandez

There is no information online available on this candidate.

Democratic Candidates

Sri Preston Kulkarni

Sri Preston Kulkarni (Ballotpedia)

Sri Preston Kulkarni’s career experience includes working as a foreign service officer. He served as a policy and defense advisor for Senator Kirsten Gillibrand. Sri said the most personal issue is the importance of affordable, quality healthcare. When he was 18, his father was diagnosed with leukemia, and Kulkarni dropped out of the University of Texas to come home to care for him. After Sri’s father passed away, he said medical bills left their family on the verge of bankruptcy, and he helped raise his three younger siblings. He ended up graduating with honors. In 2018, Kulkarni finished just five points behind Olson in the run for District 22.

Nyanza Moore

Nyanza Moore (Nyanza Moore's website)

Moore describes herself as having progressive values. She is the daughter of a Vietnam War veteran who volunteered to serve his country in the U.S. Air Force and said she is running for congress in order to be a “fresh voice” while providing a perspective she feels is needed to change the healthcare system. Moore said after her family endured multiple health crises, such as her father and mother being diagnosed with cancer, they drained their life savings to cover their care.

Derrick Reed

Derrick Reed (Ballotpedia)

Reed’s career experience includes working as an employment attorney. He was elected to the Pearland City Council in 2015 and re-elected in 2018. Reed said he plans to fight to lower the cost of healthcare and prescription drugs, including improved mental health services, reducing the hurdles involved in operating small businesses, and fixing the immigration system.

Carmine Petricco III

There is no information available for this candidate online.

Libertarian Convention Candidates

Joseph LeBlanc

There is no information available for this candidate online.

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