JACKSONVILLE — Pledging to continue being the voice of his constituents and to also "do what I feel in my heart is the best on each and every vote," State Rep. Travis Clardy on Thursday afternoon formally announced his intention to seek a second term in the Texas House of Representatives.
Flanked by staff, family, and well-wishers at the Norman Activity Center — including his mother in the audience — the District 11 state representative urged supporters to vote for him in the March 4, 2014 primary election. And to open their wallets to help fund his campaign.
Clardy, who belongs to a member of the House's Select Committee on redistricting. said it doesn't seem it's been that long since he began his first term. (District 11, incidentally, covers Cherokee, Nacogdoches and Rusk counties.)
The first term of Clardy, R-Nacogdoches, expires in 2014.
"It really does feel like we just got elected," Clardy said, "It was two years ago. .. We have made one complete lap. It's been a great experience. I learned a lot and am looking to do it again."
While Clardy had the podium, he also urged voters to approve Proposition 6 on the Nov. 5 ballot.
If approved, Proposition 6 would create the State Water Implementation Fund, otherwise known SWIFT, and appropriate $2 billion from the Economic Stabilization Fund. The Texas Water Development Board would be directed on how to make use of this fund. Implementation of SWIFT might not be completed until March 2015, according to reports.
During his remarks, the first-termer listed the accolades he received during his freshman term in office — including the 2013 Courageous Conservative Award from the Texas Conservative Coalition.
Additionally, in October 2012, he and his wife Judy — also present Thursday — were named as the 2012 Winners Circle award recipients by the Dean's Circle of the the Stephen F. Austin State University College of Fine Arts.
In other media interviews, Clardy has announced he intends to continue his focus on infrastructure and education.
During a subsequent question and answer session Friday, Clardy addressed the elephant in the room, as it were — the situation that began Oct. 1, when the U.S. federal government literarily shut down, forcing furloughs of 800,000 federal workers and suspension of many, many services.
"Sometimes it takes being on the courthouse steps to get a deal done," Clardy, 51, said. "Sometimes it doesn't make sense to say things should be this way. … 'We could have done this last month or two months ago but human nature for whatever reason has us put things off.' … I have to believe reasonable people will come to a solution for the shutdown issue."
Clardy mentioned his August town hall meeting also held at the Norman Activity Center, during which he told constituents about the two recent legislative sessions held in close proximity to one another as well as the tumultuous and controversial passage of Texas Senate Bill 5, which added and updated abortion regulations in Texas.
"We had good sessions — strong sessions," he said Friday.
Clardy's presentation was introduced by Nathan Jones, Austin Bank's regional president.
Jones said Clardy's dedication to the duties of his elected position greatly appeals to the work ethic of hard charging East Texans.
"He has our issues in mind — things like education, jobs, Rusk State Hospital, property rights and fiscal responsibility," Jones said. "I think we're getting our money's worth with Rep. Clardy."