DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – From now until the March 6 primary, we’re taking a closer look at some key races across Texas and here in the DFW area.
One race that is generating a lot of interest is the 32nd Congressional District in Dallas and Collin Counties, long held by Republican Pete Sessions. While this district has been historically Republican, it was one of three Republican Congressional districts in Texas in which Hillary Clinton won.
Even though it was a one point victory, it is giving Democrats hope that they can repeat the outcome in 2018. As a result, there are seven candidates vying in the primary.
Brett Shipp made headlines late last year when he suddenly resigned from the reporting job that made him a household name to run for Congress.
While working with his campaign staff at his home, now months later, Shipp said, “It’s exhausting, it’s exhilarating. It is uplifting. It is challenging.”
Shipp said that he went without health insurance for a month. “Today, I have Obamacare. It’s too expensive. It’s a lot more expensive. The benefits are terrible.” He said that he favors a single-payer system like the one Canada has, but for now, wants to improve Obamacare. “We’ve got to fix the system. The ACA is broken and healthcare is broken in this country. That is my number one goal — to fix healthcare.”
Shipp said that immigration reform is also a top priority. He rejects President Donald Trump’s proposal to expand a border wall, limit migration to spouses and children, and end the visa lottery program in exchange for granting a path to citizenship for DACA recipients.
Shipp wants a clean DACA bill, and to do so, wants Democrats in control. “We’ve got to take back the House. And that’s how you negotiate. It is through a position of strength. You gain leverage and you use your leverage to gain your positions.”
When asked if that’s the same tactic President Trump is using, Shipp replied, “He hasn’t done anything. He is not trustworthy. No one can believe a word he says.”
Shipp faces stiff competition, including three candidates who served in the Obama administration. When asked what separates him from the others in the Democratic primary, Shipp said, “I think the answer to that is very easy. For 25 years in this town, I have worked with the citizens of the district. I have told their stories.”
He acknowledged that his late start has made it difficult to raise money, and so he’s relying on the brand he built for himself. “These are people who aren’t asking for anything in return and they don’t expect a certain philosophy,” he said. “They just know Brett Shipp and they trust me.”
While Shipp said that a part of reporting will never leave him, he said that he loves his country more and that he decided he had to serve his country.