VIDEO: Mitch Little Discusses Race Win, School Choice

Republican Texas House nominee Mitch Little | Image by Mitch Little
Republican Texas House nominee Mitch Little | Image by Mitch Little

Republican Texas House nominee Mitch Little recently discussed his primary win and what may be in store for school choice and more during the upcoming legislative session.

Little sat down with The Texan’s Brad Johnson for an episode of the outlet’s podcast this week.

As reported by The Dallas Express, Little beat out state Rep. Kronda Thimesch in the March primaries for Texas House District 65, which encompasses the northern suburbs of Dallas and Fort Worth, as well as part of southern Denton County.

An attorney by trade, Little represented AG Ken Paxton during his impeachment trial. He campaigned on a platform opposing the appointment of Democrats to chair committees, reducing property taxes to help make home ownership attainable, and defending the Second Amendment.

“My opponent campaigns like a Republican but votes like a Democrat,” Little had said of Thimesch in a January interview with The Cross Timbers Gazette.

Now set to face off against Democratic nominee Detrick Deburr this November, Little told Johnson that he has been dividing his time between practicing law and getting the “lay of the land” by meeting with legislators, lobbyists, and constituents.

“I was joking with my wife that I woke up on March 6 with a lot of new friends,” he said.

Many of these friends are fellow signatories of the “Contract With Texas” devised to reform the Texas House and outline demands for the future speaker, as covered previously in The Dallas Express.

“I think we are going to have a very solid conservative voting bloc in the Republican caucus, and it’s probably going to be the largest block of any at the end of the day,” Little remarked.

In terms of legislative priorities, Little explained how he believes school choice will be one of the first matters tackled.

“I think a lot of the new people who are coming in [to the legislature] are going to look at the bill that ended the last special session and say that bill just wasn’t good enough, and so we’re really starting from scratch with a lot more support for the school choice issue than maybe we finished the last special session with.”

His own view is to ensure that school vouchers are available for all.

Commenting on what the new bill would look like, Little said. “At no point in the previous session did Gov. Abbott tap the sign and say, ‘Hey, I said school choice for all. This is not school choice for all,’ and it seemed like he was probably okay with some type of mediated outcome as you get to the end of the last special session.”

“I think school choice needs to start in a different place than 2023 ended,” he went on to say. “I think we need to have a better bill that is going to impact more families.”

The movement for school choice has gathered steam across Texas, with Gov. Abbott recently expressing optimism that the next legislature would usher in a new bill that would have significant changes for public and private school funding, as reported by The Dallas Express.

While detractors of school choice have referred to it as a measure to take money from underfunded public schools as a sort of “welfare for the wealthy,” as Rep. James Talarico (D-Austin) described it, per Fox 4 KDFW, polling suggests that Texas voters — both Republican and Democrat — want affordable education alternatives.

Although many publicly funded school districts are struggling right now amid the loss of federal COVID-era funding and new security mandates, Little suggested that this is a separate issue from school choice.

“We need to have public school systems that are well-run, properly financed, and operating within a reasonable budget, and we need to have school choice — so how do we accomplish all those things?” he said.

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