Van Taylor

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Van Taylor
Member of the Texas Senate
from the 8th district
Assumed office
January 13, 2015
Preceded by Ken Paxton
Member of the Texas House of Representatives
from the 66th district
In office
April 20, 2010 – January 13, 2015
Preceded by Brian McCall
Succeeded by Matt Shaheen
Personal details
Born Nicholas Van Campen Taylor
(1972-08-01) August 1, 1972 (age 46)
Dallas, Texas, U.S.
Political party Republican
Anne Taylor (m. 2002)
Residence Plano, Texas
Education Harvard University (BA, MBA)
Military service
Allegiance  United States
Service/branch  United States Marine Corps
Rank US-O4 insignia.svg Major
Battles/wars Iraq War

Nicholas Van Campen Taylor, known as Van Taylor[1] (born August 1, 1972), is an American businessman and politician from Plano, Texas. A veteran of the Iraq War and a member of the Republican Party, he represents District 8 in the Texas State Senate. He previously served in the Texas House of Representatives, representing District 66 in western Collin County.

Early years[edit]

A seventh-generation Texan, Taylor was born in Dallas.[1] He is a descendant of Humble Oil co-founder Robert Lee Blaffer.[2][3] He grew up in Midland, Texas, where he attended the Hillander School and San Jacinto Junior High School. He graduated from St. Paul's School in Concord, New Hampshire. He subsequently graduated in three years from Harvard College in Cambridge, Massachusetts, from which he obtained a Bachelor of Arts in history.[4]

Taylor married Anne Coolidge, a real estate investment manager, in 2004.[5]

Military service[edit]

In Iraq, Taylor was assigned to the Marine Corps' Company C, 4th Reconnaissance Battalion and fought with 2nd Force Reconnaissance Company. As a captain, Taylor led missions in advance of Task Force Tarawa during Operation Iraqi Freedom, which detected and defeated several Fedayeen ambushes. He also participated in a casualty evacuation of thirty-one wounded Marines, transporting them safely to medical treatment.

Taylor's military decorations include the Navy Commendation Medal with "V", the Combat Action Ribbon, and the Presidential Unit Citation. Taylor left the Marine Corps Reserve as a Major.

2006 campaign for U.S. House[edit]

In 2005 and 2006, Taylor ran for Texas's 17th congressional district in the U.S. House of Representatives. He won the Republican primary with 54.03% of the vote. With 40.31% of the vote in the general election, he lost to incumbent Chet Edwards.[6]

Texas House of Representatives[edit]

2010 campaign[edit]

On December 2, 2009, Taylor announced his candidacy for the District 66 Texas State House seat. Plano city council member Mabrie Jackson had already resigned from the council to enter the House race.[7] On November 30, 2009 incumbent Representative Brian McCall announced that he would not run for re-election.[8] Observers speculated that McCall had told Jackson that he would step down so that she could get a head start in the campaign. McCall also endorsed Jackson as his preferred successor.

The candidates in the Republican primary held on March 2, 2010, were Wayne Richards, Jackson, and Taylor. While Jackson earned the largest number of votes (41 percent) in the primary, she was shy of the 50 percent plus one vote required to win the nomination outright.[9] Wayne Richards promptly endorsed the runner-up candidate, Taylor, who then defeated Jackson in the April run-off election. McCall left the House seat early, and Taylor was sworn into office on April 20, 2010 by Collin County Judge Keith Self.

82nd Texas legislative session[edit]

During the 82nd Texas legislative session, Taylor served as the Chairman of the Subcommittee on End of Life Issues in addition to serving as a member of the Human Services Committee and the Committee on Defense and Veteran's Affairs.

Keeping a campaign promise, the first piece of legislation Taylor filed for consideration was a bill to ensure that military personnel can cast a vote while serving overseas. The bill passed unanimously in both the House and the Texas Senate and was signed into law by Governor Rick Perry. Taylor authored legislation to prevent politicians and government employees from receiving pension benefits if convicted of a felony. He also proposed legislation at the request of Collin County to prevent taxpayer subsidized health care from being given to legal immigrants who are able to afford it.

Throughout the session, Taylor took strong stances in support of requiring photo identification to vote, 2nd Amendment rights, and lowered taxes, while opposing the use of accounting gimmicks to balance the budget. Taylor also fought against the federal healthcare reform (popularly called Obamacare) by supporting an increase in states' rights to decide healthcare issues for themselves.

Taylor was cited as a "Taxpayer Champion" by the interest group Texans for Fiscal Responsibility. He was recognized by the Texas Conservative Coalition and Phyllis Schlafly's Eagle Forum for his conservative voting record during the session, receiving a rating of 90 percent or greater from both organizations.

Texas State Senate[edit]

2014 campaign[edit]

On August 2, 2013, Taylor announced he would seek the Republican Party's 2014 nomination for the Texas Senate, District 8 seat held by Ken Paxton, who was stepping down to run for state attorney general.[10]

Meanwhile, two Republicans, Matt Shaheen and Glenn Callison, competed in the May 27 runoff election to succeed Taylor in House District 66. In the primary held on March 4, 2014, Shaheen led with 4,880 votes (48.8 percent); Callison trailed with 4,001 votes (40 percent). The third candidate, Stacy Chen, held the remaining 1,116 votes (11.2 percent).[11] Shaheen won the runoff, 4,612 to 3,886[12] and then won the November 4, general election against a Libertarian Party candidate.

Political views[edit]

Taylor is considered a major ally of the Tea Party movement.[13] He was endorsed by the North Texas Tea Party for his 2014 campaign for Texas Senate, District 8.[14]

In 2017, Taylor introduced legislation to establish a registry of individuals who have been barred from employment at an educational facility. The measure, if adopted, would prevent any school employee, not just administration and faculty, from working at a school if the person is found to have engaged in an improper relationship with a student.[15]

2018 congressional campaign[edit]

In August 2017, Taylor announced that he would run for the United States House of Representatives for Texas's 3rd congressional district. Incumbent Republican Sam Johnson, who currently represents the district, has announced his retirement. Taylor was endorsed by the Club for Growth, a national conservative group,[16] and With Honor, a cross-partisan political group supporting next-generation military veterans.[17] Taylor secured the nomination after easily winning the March 6 primary.[18]


  1. ^ a b Texas Birth Index, 1903–1997.
  2. ^ "From Humble Beginnings" (PDF). New Orleans Bar Association. October 21, 2009. Retrieved February 17, 2018. 
  3. ^ "JANE OWEN Obituary – Houston, TX | Houston Chronicle". Retrieved March 29, 2015. 
  4. ^ "Connecting People, building relationships". Archived from the original on March 25, 2012. Retrieved March 29, 2015. 
  5. ^ "Coolidge-Taylor wedding". Midland Reporter-Telegram. May 8, 2004. Retrieved February 17, 2018. 
  6. ^ "State Sen. Van Taylor". Retrieved March 29, 2015. 
  7. ^ "Star Local: Plano Star Courier". Retrieved March 29, 2015. 
  8. ^ [1][dead link]
  9. ^ [2] Archived March 7, 2010, at the Wayback Machine.
  10. ^ "Taylor to seek Paxton's Texas Senate seat | Dallas Morning News". August 2, 2013. Retrieved March 29, 2015. 
  11. ^ "Republican primary election returns, March 4, 2014". Archived from the original on March 7, 2014. Retrieved March 7, 2014. 
  12. ^ "Republican runoff election returns, May 27, 2014". Texas Secretary of State. Archived from the original on January 9, 2014. Retrieved December 1, 2014. 
  13. ^ Tomlinson, Chris (January 15, 2013). "Texas House starts session with fight over rules, powers | Lubbock Online | Lubbock Avalanche-Journal". Retrieved March 29, 2015. 
  14. ^ "First NTTP TeaApproval for 2014 – Van Taylor for State Senate, District 8". August 2, 2013. Archived from the original on June 5, 2015. Retrieved March 29, 2015. 
  15. ^ Elena Mejia Lutz, "Improper relations at school targeted", San Antonio Express-News, February 24, 2017, p. A5.
  16. ^ Svitek, Patrick (August 23, 2017). "GOP state Sen. Van Taylor of Plano makes congressional run official". Texas Tribune. Retrieved September 5, 2017. 
  17. ^ "With Honor Endorses Nine Next-Generation Veterans for Congress". Politico. January 25, 2018. 
  18. ^

External links[edit]

Texas House of Representatives
Preceded by
Brian McCall
Member of the Texas House of Representatives
from the 66th district

Succeeded by
Matt Shaheen
Texas Senate
Preceded by
Ken Paxton
Member of the Texas Senate
from the 8th district