Texas State Rep. Tan Parker (R, Flower Mound) has announced that he will run for a seventh term as the District 63 representative.
A Dallas businessman with a master’s degree from the London University of Economics, Parker presents himself as a conservative, pro-business and pro-family politician. He co-founded the consulting firm Applied Business Strategies after holding executive positions in several Fortune 500 companies. Parker has held his seat since 2007 and is incredibly popular in his district, never earning less than 70 percent of the vote in a general election in the years when he’s been opposed at all.
In a controversial legislative session, Parker has mostly stayed out of the headlines. He was one of 15 co-sponsors for the bill that prohibited straight-ticket voting, voted with fellow Republicans to prohibit “sanctuary cities” and co-sponsored several pieces of legislation increasing restrictions around abortions late in the special session. Two of these bills increase reporting requirements on doctors performing abortions on minors or who encounter complications during the procedure, and the third requires women to pay an extra premium to cover elective abortions — quickly dubbed the “rape insurance” bill by critics. He was also one of many co-sponsors for HB 253, the special session bill that would have established a tax credit to help disabled children afford private schools.
Parker said he passionately promotes a “culture of life” in Texas.
“I voted for a budget that not only provided $12.3 million for alternatives to abortion and an increase of over $30 million for Healthy Texas Women, but also a rider that authorizes HHSC [Health and Human Services] to spend up to an additional $38.3 million on women’s health if the agency determines there is a demand,” he said. “This funding goes to providers throughout the state who provide women with free pregnancy and parenting information and other services such as mentoring, referrals to community and social service programs and material goods. Broadly speaking, the state is now providing more resources for women’s health needs than ever before.”
Healthy Texas Women is the state-sponsored attempt to replace Planned Parenthood in Texas with a similar program that does not perform abortions. Texas has been at the center of controversy in recent years as one of many states that legally requires doctors to give out what they describe as medically incorrect information to discourage women from having abortions, including pamphlets published by the HHSC.
Parker said that if he’s elected, next session he wants to work on property tax reform, school finance solutions, paycheck protections from labor unions and state spending limits.