A radical leftist is set to challenge US Congressman Bill Flores (R-Bryan) in the November midterm elections.

Flores, who has represented Texas’ 17th Congressional District since defeating then-incumbent Democrat Chet Edwards in 2010, is the first Republican to represent the district since its formation in 1919.

Elected with the hope that he would be a conservative leader in Washington, Flores has since become what many would describe as a mere tool of the Republican establishment given his lackluster voting record. According to national conservative organizations like Club for Growth and Heritage Action, Flores receives poorer marks than many of his Republican colleagues, even those in the state of Texas.

As a result, some conservative voters in his district may not be overly enthusiastic about turning out to vote for him, potentially leaving the window open for a Democratic challenger to make the race far more competitive than it should be.

Flores’ challenger is Democrat Rick Kennedy, a Pennsylvania State University-educated software engineer from the Austin suburbs (by way of Massachusetts) who lives on the outskirts of the district.

Not a moderate by any means, Kennedy holds radical left-wing positions such as expanding Obamacare and implementing a universal single-payer healthcare system, opposing the GOP tax cuts, and giving amnesty to the 11 million plus illegal aliens residing in the United States.

Kennedy further advocates for what he dubs “internetification” of rural areas and a return to the economic policies of Franklin D. Roosevelt at the expense of “trickle-down economics,” for which an entire page is dedicated on his campaign website. Given these positions, there is little doubt that this man would love nothing more than to expand the size of the federal government exponentially, a prospect which would no doubt horrify the district’s staunchly conservative voters.

Between the 2014 election to the 2016 election, Flores received approximately 4% less of the vote, and Democrats gained approximately 3% of the vote. Will this trend continue, allowing a radical left-wing carpetbagger to come within striking distance of a supposedly conservative Republican in one of the most conservative congressional districts in one of the most conservative states in the country?

If Flores isn’t careful, a far-left Democrat from the Austin suburbs will soon be representing the principled Central Texas conservatives he claims to care so much about.

Zachary Miller

Zachary Miller is a lifelong Texan and a student at Baylor University. A part of the University Scholars honors program, he is triple majoring in History, Political Science, and Philosophy. Zachary is currently a contributor at Lone Conservative and a Fellow at Empower Texans.