U.S. Rep. John Carter gave Liberty Hill Intermediate School students an abbreviated lesson in government Monday.
Fifth and sixth grade students filled the bleachers in the school gym to hear Carter, R-Round Rock, give a condensed version of the differences between state and federal government, as well as the process for passing legislation at the federal level.
The six-term Congressman and a former district judge from Williamson County, Carter is seeking re-election to the District 31 seat in November and faces Democrat Louie Minor. District 31 includes Liberty Hill, and Williamson and Bell counties.
Carter shared with students the process of passing a bill through the Congress and the U.S. Senate. He spoke about the committee structure and the actions the President can take to either sign legislation into law or use his veto power.
Carter is Chairman of the Homeland Security Subcommittee on Appropriations. He also serves on the Commerce, Justice and Science Subcommittee and Defense Subcommittee. He is also Co-Chairman of the bipartisan House Army Caucus, and has been a member of the House Appropriations Committee since 2004.
As an example of the legislative process, the Texas Tech University alum jokingly offered the idea of a bill that would make it illegal to wear University of Texas t-shirts. “Although I would support that, I don’t think it would pass,” he said.
Carter also spoke about his first piece of legislation that passed into law — a bill that enhanced the punishment for identity theft.
Following his presentation, Carter questions from students that were pre-written and read by individual students.
The questions ranged from Carter’s political party affiliation to how he handles the stress of the job.
Carter responded that he had always been a Republican and was the first Republican to be elected countywide in Williamson County. He said he believes the conservative values of his party are more in line with those of the voters in the district.
He said reading is what he does to deal with stress, adding that he is currently reading two novels and a history textbook.
One student also asked about his position on gun rights, to which he affirmed his opposition to “gun control.”
“But with rights come obligations and responsibilities,” he added. “But this is a never-ending fight. Various people have tried to restrict the right to own guns, and I expect they will continue to fail.”