Meet the Candidate: Jace Yarbrough for Texas Senate District 30
Meet the Candidate: Jace Yarbrough for Texas Senate District 30

Meet the Candidate: Jace Yarbrough for Texas Senate District 30

Jace Yarbrough, a candidate for the Texas Senate District 30 seat being vacated by Sen. Drew Springer, met with Olney community leaders on Friday at Hometown Coffee & Tea to introduce himself and talk about his positions on state issues.

Mr. Yarbrough, raised in Tuscola near Abilene, attended the University of Texas at Austin and served as a developmental engineer in the U.S. Air Force. He later attended law school at Stanford University and has participated in landmark litigation involving the right to refuse vaccination mandates at work, pro-life, and religious liberty, he said.

He is a proponent of “parental empowerment in education,” and says he does not have a preferred policy approach such as vouchers. He founded a Christian school in Denton, where he lives with his wife and five children.

“I have always felt called to politics … and have always been active in Republican politics,” he said. “This is the kind of work I am called to do. I love truth, liberty, freedom, Texas, and what makes this a special place,” Mr. Yarbrough said.

The school choice issue “is an example of the kinds of fights that are going on in our culture the lengths and depths to which those that disagree with our values will go to force their ideology on us. And the resolve and fortitude that leaders that we elect will have to have in order to defend our values,” he said.

These kinds of fights are happening in all kinds of institutions in our culture: public libraries for example, corporations, public schools even.”

“I’m committed to making sure that parents who see that danger and want different options … who want to protect them from this radical ideology have the option to do that. At the same time … the vast majority of our students are still going to be in what we call public schools. And so reforming and encouraging and bolstering those schools to be what we want them to be as Texans is essential.”

“Education is about forming the person,” he said. “I would rather have my children be illiterate but know intuitively what good, true, and beautiful things are even if they can’t express them in words, That’s what education should be about.”

Mr. Yarbrough said he would consider a carveout that would prevent well-performing rural school districts from losing funding under a voucher-type scheme such as that favored by Gov. Greg Abbott.

“I’m not wedded to a particular policy approach. Vouchers is not a priority for me. My fundamental objective is to say for those parents … who don’t have the means to go to a private school [or to home school] I want to give them the means to go to … choose the education they think best for their kids, in addition to public school, maybe that’s private school, maybe homeschool, maybe online school,” he said.

Mr. Yarbrough also identified illegal migration at the U.S.-Mexico border as a priority agenda item for the Texas Legislature. “We are in grave situation. The constitutional questions being raised by what’s going on at the border could not be greater nor could the practical implication for our way of life. There has never been a time when we have pushed back against invaders, successfully to a small degree, and … the federal government has sued us on behalf of the invaders,” he said. “That’s unprecedented.”

He supports standing up a border protection unit with “maximally aggressive rules of engagement” when it comes to arresting and deporting illegal migrants, “no [instate college] tuition unless you can prove residency … mandate eVerify for Texas employers … ban foreign adversaries and their agents from owning our lands.”

“The governor should exercise his constitutional duties no matter what the [U.S.] Supreme Court says,” he said.

His position is other constitutional actors should not necessarily treat Supreme Court decisions as binding precedent immediately, referring to a lawsuit brought against legislation sponsored by Rep. David Spiller that allows Texas law enforcement officers to arrest illegal immigrants and creates state penalties for crossing the border anywhere other than a port of entry.

Mr. Yarbrough is facing three other Republican candidates for the District 30 race, including Brent Hagenbuch and Cody Clark of Denton, and Carrie de Moor of Frisco.

The primary election is set for March 5 with early voting to begin on Feb. 20.