Texas Rep. Michael Burgess to Seek Re-election in Heavily Conservative District

Michael Burgess is seeking re-election to North Texas' Congressional District 26, perhaps the most conservative area in the state.The Pilot Point Republican told The Dallas Morning News Editorial Board on Tuesday that he is needed in Congress for at least another term.A medical doctor by profession, Burgess is one of the leading voices in the GOP's effort to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, one of the crowning achievements of Barack Obama's presidential tenure."It's important that I stay," Burgess said when asked if he would run for re-election in 2018. "It's important to keep doing what I'm doing."But he won't have a free ride. He's being challenged in the March GOP primary by Frisco businesswoman and former supporter Veronica Birkenstock. She's the founder of Practical Employee Solutions, a company that helps businesses recruit employees from other countries through the H-2B visa program. Last year, Burgess voted against expanding the program.Despite the overwhelming odds against them in the mostly Republican district, at least four Democrats are vying to unseat Burgess. The district, which includes most of Denton County and parts of Tarrant and Dallas counties, is a place where Democrats have been docile at best.But the Indivisible Denton movement that surfaced after the election of President Donald Trump has taken hold in Congressional District 26, as progressives and supporters of the Affordable Care Act take aim at Burgess.The candidates include Ira Bershad of Frisco, Will Fisher of Flower Mound, Linsey Fagan of Keller and Michael Callaway of Roanoke."We're running to build in those areas," said Manny Garcia, deputy executive director of the Texas Democratic Party. "This is the kind of passion we need. The goal is to have candidates in every congressional district."  Continue reading...

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