Two of the three candidates for the Texas House District 60 race appeared at the Adams Street Community Center forum Monday night and answered questions on topics including the state’s Republican Party platform, school funding, abortion and last year’s Ranger College annexation vote.
    Incumbent Mike Lang of Granbury, who is seeking a second term, and challenger Greg Risse of Coleman attended the forum. Dr. Jim Largent, who is superintendent of the Granbury school district and also seeking the seat, did not attend.
    Lang, who retired from a 30-year law enforcement career, said he is a fiscal and social conservative who has received numerous endorsements. “I stand for life, I stand for liberty and I stand for private property rights,” Lang said.
    Risse has retired from two previous careers — the Air Force and education.
    The first question read by moderator Leland Acker was whether Republican members of the Texas Legislature should support the priorities in the 266-items Republican Party platform.
    “Yes sir, they should,” Lang replied. “I believe the Republican Party platform is a platform that you guys made, anti starts at the precinct conventions, which are your neighborhoods. … if you sign up as a Republican, you ought to follow that platform.”
    Risse agreed, saying, “I don’t yoke myself up with just anything.” But Risse said he is “very happily and gladly” yoked with the Republican Party.
    Another question was on the topic of whether the candidates were support a ban on abortion.
    “How could you not love that word ‘abolish?’” Risse responded. “God’s the author of life.”
    Lang said he co-authored a bill in the last legislative session to abolish aborton that died in committee because of liberal House leadership. “We can’t be killing babies. We just can’t,” Lang said. “I will continue to fight for the abortion ban.”
    On the question of how to improve school, Lang said, “start all over. That’s probably the best way.”
    Lang said the school funding is out of balance as unfunded mandates cause spending to be on the increase for administrate costs but on the decrease for classroom spending. “What we need to do is reverse that trend,” Lang said.
    Risse said when he was in school, “the poorest of the poor” could still bring $1.25 to buy lunch. “We have taken the onus off the parents,” Risse said. “They’ve got money for snuff, for beer, for lottery tickets, for cable TV, for Netflix. They’ve got money for everything but their kids.”