David Simpson (Texas politician)

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David Philip Simpson
Member of the Texas House of Representatives
from the 7th district
Assumed office
2011
Preceded by Tommy Merritt
Personal details
Born (1961-06-27) June 27, 1961 (age 54)
Lubbock, Texas, USA
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Susan Simpson
Children Seven children
Residence Longview, Texas
Alma mater

Vanderbilt University (B.A., 1983)

Trinity Ministerial Academy
Profession Businessman
Religion Baptist
Website State Rep. David Simpson

David Philip Simpson (born June 27, 1961)[1] is a Republican member of the Texas House of Representatives for the 7th District based in Gregg and Upshur counties. In 2010, he unseated the incumbent, Tommy Merritt of Longview, in the Republican primary with 52.88 percent of the vote and then prevailed in the general election for the 82nd Texas Legislature on November 2, 2010 with 91.28 percent of the vote, having had no Democrat opponent.[2]

Life and career[edit]

Simpson was born in Lubbock in West Texas. He was the mayor of Avinger in Cass County from 1993 to 1998 before he relocated in 2000 to Longview, the seat of government of Gregg County. He and his wife, Susan, have seven children. Simpson is a Christian and has published a Statement of Faith.[3] He has been described as someone who "did exactly what he said he would do in his campaign and stood for limited government".[4]

Simpson's website states that he "will steadfastly fight for limited government and freedom under the rule of law."[5]

Simpson again defeated Merritt in the 2012 Republican primary to secure his second term and was then unopposed in the November 6 general election in which Barack H. Obama defeated Mitt Romney.

In December 2012, Simpson announced his candidacy for Texas House Speaker in a conservative bid to oust the moderate Republican Joe Straus of San Antonio from the top position in the leadership of the chamber. As Simpson entered the contest for speaker, his East Texas colleague, Bryan Hughes of Mineola, exited the race, having tried for six months previously to line up commitments from colleagues to oust Straus.[6] Hughes immediately endorsed Simpson "wholeheartedly" over Straus, and called him an "eminently fair, highly principled, and hardworking legislator".[6] However, Simpson withdrew before the balloting for Speaker began, and Straus was reelected without opposition on January 8, 2013.[7]

Political positions[edit]

Security screening[edit]

Simpson filed legislation in the 2011 Texas legislative session to be able to prosecute, what he deemed, "offensive and intrusive groping" searches of private parts without probable cause by the Transportation Security Administration and other security personnel. The bill, HB 1937,[8] passed unanimously out of committee and then again out of the Texas House. The bill had 94 co-authors from both parties.[9] However, it failed to pass in the Texas Senate after the U.S. Department of Justice threatened to make Texas a no-fly zone were the legislation to be enacted.[10][11][12]

Immigration[edit]

During the children's immigration crisis, Simpson visited the border to see first hand what was happening. Upon his return, he called for more immigration judges,[13] and advocated for greater compassion for immigrants.[14][15]

Marijuana[edit]

Simpson is in favor of the decriminalization of marijuana, on the basis that it is created by God.[16] In May 2015 he presented a bill to legalize marijuana. It was approved by the House Criminal Jurisprudence Committee, but failed to advance further.[17][18]

Marriage[edit]

Simpson advocates for marriage privatization, proposing to "divorce marriage from government" in the light of Obergefell v. Hodges. In June 2015, Simpson asked Governor Greg Abbott to convene a special session to consider removing "state and local officials from the process of issuing marriage licenses."[19][20]

2016 prospects[edit]

Simpson is not seeking reelection to the House in 2016. Instead he will contest the Republican primary on March 1, 2016, for the District 1 seat in the Texas State Senate seat held since 2004 by another Republican, Kevin Eltife of Tyler, who is not seeking reelection. Opposing Simpson for the state Senate will be his House colleague, Bryan Hughes of District 5 and Two Star Army General Red Brown of Lindale.[21][22] In the contest against Simpson, Hughes carries the backing of Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick, the presiding officer of the state Senate.[23]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Rep. Elect David Simpson". Texas State Directory. Retrieved 1 December 2010. 
  2. ^ "David Simpson". The Texas Tribune. Retrieved 1 December 2010. 
  3. ^ "Biography". Retrieved 1 December 2010. 
  4. ^ Lutz, William (26 April 2011). "Opinion: Simpson played by the rules". The Lone Star Report. Retrieved 17 May 2011. 
  5. ^ "David Simpson's Website". David Simpson Campaign. 17 May 2011. Retrieved 17 May 2011. 
  6. ^ a b Tim Eaton (December 10, 2012). "Simpson announces run for speaker of Texas House". Austin American Statesman. Retrieved December 30, 2012. 
  7. ^ "Legislature opens; Straus re-elected", Laredo Morning Times, January 9, 2013, p. 10A
  8. ^ "Texas Legislature Online". The State of Texas. 17 May 2011. Retrieved 17 May 2011. 
  9. ^ Steinmetz, Katy (17 May 2011). "Texas House Passes TSA Anti-'Groping' Bill". TIME NewsFeed. Retrieved 17 May 2011. 
  10. ^ Unruh, Bob (25 May 2011). "Feds to Texas: We'll make you a 'no-fly' zone Read more: Feds to Texas: We'll make you a 'no-fly' zone". WorldNetDaily. Retrieved 26 May 2011. 
  11. ^ Batheja, Aman (26 May 2011). "Senator blasts Dewhurst in airport bill's failure". Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Retrieved 26 May 2011. 
  12. ^ Kashmir Hill, "TSA Threatens to Cancel All Flights Out Of Texas If 'Groping Bill' Passed", Forbes, May 25, 2011.
  13. ^ Carter, Alexandra (15 July 2014). "East Texas state representative visits border". KETK NBC. Retrieved 28 July 2014. 
  14. ^ Simpson, David. "The case for compassion at the border". Retrieved 28 July 2014. 
  15. ^ Evans, Glenn. "Message to Simpson on border crisis: ‘Constituents come first’". news-journal.com. Retrieved 28 July 2014. 
  16. ^ Simpson, David. "The Christian case for drug law reform". TribTalk. The Texas Tribune. Retrieved 5 August 2015. 
  17. ^ Phillip, Abby (8 May 2015). "Backed by the ‘Christian case’ for weed, legalization bill moves forward in Texas". Washington Post. Retrieved 5 August 2015. 
  18. ^ Dart, Tom (8 July 2015). "Texas town tired of 'war on drugs' at the border sees push for legal marijuana". The Guardian. Retrieved 5 August 2015. 
  19. ^ Donegan, Barry (30 June 2015). "TX State Rep. Calls for Special Session to "Divorce Marriage from Government"". Truth in Media. Retrieved 5 August 2015. 
  20. ^ "Simpson: Remove state, local officials from marriage licensing". Longview News-Journal. 29 June 2015. Retrieved 6 August 2015. 
  21. ^ http://www.kltv.com/story/30187304/republican-general-red-brown-kicks-off-campaign-for-senate-district-1.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  22. ^ Glenn Evans (July 3, 2015). "Republican candidate David Watts joins race to represent Gregg, Upshur counties". Longview News-Journal. Retrieved November 28, 2015. 
  23. ^ Ross Ramsey (August 25, 2015). "Lt. Gov. Patrick Endorses Hughes in Open Senate Seat". The Texas Tribune. Retrieved November 30, 2015. 
Texas House of Representatives
Preceded by
Tommy Merritt
Texas State Representative from District 7
2011–present
Incumbent