August 27, 2013

Constituents, Business and Health Care Leaders urge Dr. Deuell to Keep Serving

BONHAM (Aug. 27) — At a rural medical clinic in Fannin County packed with supporters, State Senator Bob Deuell, MD, himself a family physician, announced his plans this evening to seek another term serving Senate District Two.

“There is a reason why Texas leads the nation, economically and otherwise,” said Senator Deuell, “and that is because we know that freedom goes hand-in-hand with responsibility, and that government needs to get out of the way of both.”

Dr. Deuell kicked off his reelection campaign at one of the District’s small town medical practices. “In keeping Texas strong, we must continue to support the opportunities found in Texas and plan for the growth they bring,” said Deuell. “Protecting our health care system and promoting our economy are two of the main reasons why I respectfully ask you for another term in Austin.”

The Family Care Clinic of Bonham is owned and operated by James E. Froelich, DO and serves families throughout the area. “Being a physician or a patient in the present environment is treacherous,” said Dr. Froelich. “Dr. Deuell has the integrity, strength of character, knowledge and experience to steer us through the troubled waters now and in the coming years. We are fortunate to have a full time physician and true citizen legislator to represent us in Austin.”

Senator Deuell was among the leaders of the 83rd Legislative Session in blocking many of the mandates of President Obama’s Affordable Health Care Act, also known as Obamacare. Foremost was Austin’s successful opposition to expanding Medicaid under the Act. Deuell also proposed an independent health insurance exchange for Texans only — a bill that would have addressed insurance costs in a common sense, independent way.

“Medicaid was never intended for able-bodied adults,” said Deuell. “We have got to stop the culture of dependency that has taken over our country. Obamacare is the front line of this fight and is probably the worst example in my lifetime of government getting in the way of us meeting our own responsibilities. More government will not get health insurance premiums down. Obamacare is forcing employers to cut health plans with the goal of wrecking our current system and making everyone depend on the government.”

Blocking the expansion of Medicaid was only one of many accomplishments by Deuell and other conservative Republicans during the 83rd Legislature. Since first elected to the Texas Senate, Deuell has been an advocate for responsible spending and taxation. With his experienced input, the Texas legislature has kept spending at levels below the population growth and inflation rates. And unlike Washington and many other states, Texas has saved money and strengthened its employee pension programs. The teacher retirement system, as an example, has more than $115 billion in cash assets, owing to the work of legislators like Senator Deuell.

Dr. Deuell plays a key leadership role in policy debates outside fiscal matters also. Along with Health and Human Services Chairwoman Jane Nelson of Flower Mound and bill sponsor Glenn Hegar of Katy, Deuell led the effort to pass the nation’s toughest law defending life this summer. Section Two of Sen. Hegar’s bill was originally authored by Deuell and required abortion clinics to meet the same standards as ambulatory surgical centers. The bill also banned abortion once an unborn baby reaches 20 weeks old.

“The bill we passed during the Special Session protects both women’s health and babies,” noted Deuell. “We have learned so much more about fetal viability in recent years, and so I borrow the quote from the late U.S. Rep. Henry Hyde, ‘Can we at least draw the line at torture?'” Dr. Deuell’s support of responsible, better-supervised women’s health programs has also resulted in fewer unwanted pregnancies, fewer children on welfare, and fewer abortions.

Dr. Deuell also championed a measure to protect patients and families who are facing end-of-life decisions, and he will continue to work to protect life and help Texans during such a difficult time. He has been a strong supporter of public health, emphasizing the cost savings of funding mental health programs which result in keeping non-violent individuals out of more expensive prisons. For his work, Mental Health America of Greater Houston named him “Legislator of the Year.”

Texas teachers also awarded Senator Deuell with the “Legislator of the Year” award from the Associaton of Texas Professional Educators. Senator Deuell has been a strong advocate for Texas’ education system, both public, private and at home, and especially for better equity for rural public schools. During the 83rd Legislative Session, Senator Deuell worked with Education Committee Chairman Dan Patrick of Houston to improve public schools by repealing outdated mandates, addressing local control over curriculum and streamlining state testing requirements.

Senator Deuell remains steadfast in his defense of the Second Amendment and the right of the people to bear arms. Along with Rep. Dan Flynn of Van, Sen. Deuell supported improvements to the state’s CHL law. He was also active in supporting the right of 21-year-old college students to carry a concealed firearm on their campuses across the state.

Senator Deuell was also successful in his new position as Chairman of the Senate Economic Development Committee. In addition to new protections for Texas taxpayers on existing state incentive programs, Chairman Deuell passed several bills designed to keep Texas’ robust economy moving forward.

“Texans have much to be thankful for and proud of compared to other states who are still struggling underneath Washington’s bad ideas,” Deuell said. “I want to keep our business momentum going and enhance Texas’ position as a national leader in energy, innovation and technology.”

Chairman Deuell has also been outspoken about the need to fund the state’s 50 year water plan and transportation needs. He noted that if Texas is to be competitive in the future, legislators must address those needs and not ignore them when pressure is applied from some misguided groups who are only interested in defunding government. Chairman Deuell explained that if Austin doesn’t keep its priorities straight, local Governments will be forced to ask their citizens to pay higher property taxes and will be limited in investing in their communities.

Senator Deuell ranks as one of the most senior legislators of the Texas Senate. In addition to his position as Chairman of Economic Development, Deuell is the Vice-Chairman of both Health and Human Services and State Affairs. He is also a member of the Finance Committee and Natural Resources Committee.

Senate District Two is comprised of all or part of nine counties, including Delta, Fannin, Hopkins, Hunt, Kaufman, Rains, Rockwall, Van Zandt and the eastern communities of Dallas.

Contact for press only: Trey Bahm, Political Director

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