The 2018 Texas Primaries have come and gone, setting history for some and for others, proving to be a bigger challenge than expected. However, Congressman Bill Flores spent Tuesday night watching the results at home. Flores ran unopposed in the Republican Primary. The next morning, he joined Brazos Valley This Morning from DC to discuss the latest in Washington.
It’s been three weeks since the shooting at a high school in Parkland, Florida where 17 people died during an attack with an AR-15 rifle.
President Trump has suggested raising the minimum age to purchase an assault rifle from 18 to 21 but Rep. Flores says he wants to have a discussion first.
“A lot of us in Texas learn how to shoot when we’re very young, so I want to make sure that anything we do is based on facts and also, make sure that we protect our second amendment rights,” Flores said. “I’m willing to have the discussion. When I initially heard about the murderer only being 19 and buying a gun, I thought well maybe we ought to raise the age, but I think we need to have a discussion.”
The president has also suggested arming teachers, something that’s legal in Texas Private Schools and recently, at least one Texas school district has taken steps to arm their teachers. Flores says that decision should be left to state and local governments. “I don’t think the federal government should get involved with that particular type of mandate to our school districts.”
Tariffs on Steel and Aluminum
Tuesday, President Trump's top economic advisor, Gary Cohn, announced he would resign over the president's proposed tariffs on imported aluminum and steel. Several world leaders have also announced plans to retaliate.
If the tariffs take effect, economists say it will be good for metal workers, which there are a lot of in District 17, but it will be bad for everyone else who uses aluminum and steel daily. Flores drew upon Jewett, TX as an example, where metal workers were hurt by foreign dumping of steel and aluminum.
“So I support trying to stop the dumping. I don’t support broad tariffs.” Flores said. “I just signed on to a letter led by our neighbor Congressman Kevin Brady yesterday to ask the president to look at targeted responses to dumping and not to using these broad tariffs which would hurt our economy, hurt our consumers right here at home.”
Battling Sex Traficking
Also on Tuesday, Rep. Flores and the House of Representatives passed a really important bill. It gives prosecutors, state attorneys general and sex trafficking victims a clearer route to pursue legal action against websites that advertise for prostitutes.
Advocates say these websites like Backpage support human trafficking.
“As we’ve done our oversight in Congress, we’ve determined that over 70% of the victims of human trafficking were either solicited via the internet or they have been, for lack of a better term, marketed over the internet.” Flores claims the new bill will bring our laws into the 21st century so we can “deal with this scourge of modern-day slavery.”