Race to Watch: Texas House District 47

Paul Workman (Workman campaign)

The fight to keep western Travis County in the red comes down to two men fired up on the topic of amnesty – in some form or fashion. Rep. Paul Workman and his primary challenger, lawyer Ryan Downton, have dug into a race full of neighborhoods plastered in illegal immigration signs.

Both men have pledged to clamp down on the issue. However, Workman can’t seem to get past a piece of failed legislation he authored last session that would have given undocumented immigrants the opportunity to apply for resident alien cards if they pass a criminal background check.

Downtown has said the bill would have offered amnesty to that group, though Workman denies that as a possibility. The bill never received a vote in the House.

Ryan Downton (KXAN)

Downton’s campaign has put up signs throughout the district stating Workman supports amnesty for undocumented immigrants, pushing people to the website paulworkman.org. It was specifically created to attack Workman on this issue.

Workman – who raised five times more money last month that Downton – has since put up his own counter signs, saying he opposes amnesty. However, during a recent forum, it was clear he and members of the audience felt other issues have been overshadowed by this single topic.

The forum eventually showed the two have similar views on a variety of things: leaving the rainy day fund untouched, repealing President Barack Obama’s health insurance plan, and focusing on water during this drought-stricken time for the district.

The winner of this race will face Democrat Chris Frandsen, a small businessman and veteran.

Copyright 2014 KXAN.COM. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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