Rep. Kyle Kacal was following the dictates of the Texas Constitution

Bob Schoolfield of Austin (Eagle, Jan. 15) challenged state Rep. Kyle Kacal's vote for a bill during the last legislative session. That vote was for an amendment to an appropriations bill. The amendment disallowed state funding for school vouchers or tax-credit scholarships to taxpayers when they desire for their children to "opt out" of public schools.

Schoolfield "reminded" voters in Rep. Kacal's district that a large majority of statewide Republican Primary voters expressed their support related to "school choice."

I don't remember the particulars of that primary "opinion" vote. I understand that Rep. Kacal is a Republican. I sense that Schoolfield is in favor both of school choice and state-funded vouchers or credits to families when students do not participate in public schools. I also sense that he seems opposed to Rep. Kacal's re-election.

I don't know either of them. It could be, though, that Kacal sensed that, while "school choice" is everyone's option for their children, the state has a legal obligation, mandated by the state Constitution, to "establish and make suitable provision for the support and maintenance of an efficient system of free public schools." (Article 7, Sec. 1)

Perhaps Schoolfield's "beef" or "gripe" is actually with the state Constitution, and Rep. Kacal responsibly voted for the state to do the very best possible for public education as funding and taxation allow. Rep. Kacal did not vote "against school choice" as an option for anyone.

A vote such as his, rather, seeks public funding to the fullest extent for public education as constitutionally required.

It's an immensely challenging state responsibility to facilitate education equitably across our school districts.

TED V. FOOTE Jr.

Bryan

Shocked that anyone could be shocked without the facts

I was shocked -- shocked -- to read this quote in (Eagle, Jan. 22): "We're just five guys living in a five-bedroom house off Meadow View and had a crazy night happen." We can't have five unrelated individuals living in a single house in College Station, can we? No we can't.

What you can have is a widowed father with four sons. Maybe a grandfather, father and three sons. I read the original article and nowhere did the person making the statement say they are "unrelated." It's nice to know so people know everything about everyone else's business.

Not everyone can work for the NSA or Big Brother. Let's all jump to conclusions. Give me a break.

JIM GILES

College Station

Reasons to vote for supporters of the Affordable Care Act

Keith Arnold (Eagle, Jan. 20) continues to rail against the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). Otherwise, it's mostly tea party Republicans in primary elections who still are making it an issue. The Affordable Care Act is established law and will be almost impossible to repeal. It probably will not be a major issue in the upcoming general election.

Contrary to Republican claims, the act does not regulate health care or radically change Medicare or Medicaid. Instead, it regulates the private health insurance industry -- an industry that historically has been inefficient, corrupt, exploitive and unresponsive to policy holders.

The Affordable Care Act helps uninsured Americans obtain private medical insurance at affordable and competitive rates and it seeks to lower medical costs for everyone. Its many features include a mandate that insurance companies accept applicants regardless of pre-existing medical condition and provide free preventative care such as annual check-ups. Insurers cannot drop individuals who become sick or place annual or lifetime limits on coverage. The law allows children to stay on a parent's policy to age 26. Importantly, the Affordable Care Act requires insurance companies to keep administrative costs to 15 percent to 20 percent of premiums.

The Affordable Care Act is not taking over health care in this country. Most of us will continue to receive health insurance through our employer with little change. As of Jan. 1, about 2 million people had enrolled through the act. The long-term goal is to have 30 million people enrolled. That would only be about 8 percent of the population, leaving most people largely unaffected.

Opponents of the act are more concerned with who controls government and who benefits from that control than with who gets health care and how it is administered. Don't be misled. Vote for supporters of the Affordable Care Act.

BOB PRESLEY

College Station

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