TX-19 congressional race, Arrington, Watson

All 435 seats in the House of Representatives are up for election this year including TX-19.

Congressman Jodey Arrington says he is proud of the work he has accomplished on Capitol Hill and says West Texas should be too.

"Whether it was passing farm bills or reducing taxes and having pro-ag and energy deregulation along with better and fair trade deals with USMCA," Rep. Arrington said.

He says under his leadership the South Plains, or "the food, fuel and fiber capital of the world" as he calls it, is a leader for the rest of the country.

But his challenger Tom Watson of Abilene says four years in Washington have led the congressman astray.

"We're not just talking to the people with money. Mr. Arrington limits his approach to those who are in supposedly influential positions," Watson said. "He does not direct his attention to the working class people and the people who are struggling."

Watson says if elected he would focus on all of District 19's constituents.

He is also critical of Republican decisions made throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

"They just don't care, I mean that's the only way I can put it, they don't care. If they cared, they would do something about it. The Republicans don't understand that we're losing lives, people are dying because of this virus," he said.

Arrington has defended the GOP's crisis response arguing livelihoods are also at stake. 

"I think this president and I think congress up until the last few months was working well to provide the much-needed relief to families to businesses to cities and states and schools, " the congressman said. "But in the last couple of months I've been disappointed," he added.

Arrington blames Speaker Nancy Pelosi and House Democrats for stalling stimulus talks in Washington with strictly partisan bills.

He expects economic relief to come after the election.

Rep. Arrington also rejects the Former Vice President's statements at the last debate about transitioning away from the oil and gas industry.

"There's no way that our economy could ever be supported on renewable energy," he said.

Watson believes it is a balance.

"Oil and gas industry isn't going away. They're going to be a vital part of our recovery. But we've got to pay attention to other sources also," Watson said.

Texas' 19th congressional district has a long history of conservative values and has not elected a democratic candidate since Kent Hance in 1982.