Editorial note: This is the twenty-third in our series of electronic interviews with candidates in contested primaries at both the Statewide level and throughout Harris County. We have sent eight open-ended questions to each of the candidates. The following are verbatim copies of the questions sent out and the answers received.
Sid Miller, candidate in the Republican primary for Agriculture Commissioner
Texpatriate: What is your name?
SM: Sid Miller
T: What office are you running for?
SM: Texas Commissioner of Agriculture
T: What is your profession/occupation?
SM: Farmer & Rancher, Nursery Owner
T: In just a few words, what does the office you are running for do and what are its responsibilities?
SM: The Texas Department of Agriculture facilitates trade and market development of agriculture commodities, regulates all fuel pumps, regulates pesticide use, and administers the National School Lunch and Breakfast programs for public school children in Texas among other proponents.
T: If you are running against an incumbent (primary or general), do you think the incumbent has failed? If so, why specifically?
SM: It’s an open seat. As Agriculture Commissioner, my primary focus will be on water conservation and management between agricultural, industrial, and suburban usage.
T: What would be your three biggest properties if elected?
SM: With the serious issue of both short term drought and long-term demand on our precious water resources, my administration’s objective will be to focus on protecting and preserving these resources and in educating Texans about the appropriate use of water and defending Texas agriculturalists from the illegitimate, bloated, intrusive, and overreaching actions being taken against them by the Obama Administration. As the former Chairman of Homeland Security and Public Safety in the Texas House of Representatives, I will also take every step necessary and available to secure the Texas border. As the average age of the Texas farmer and rancher is around 60 years old, I will continuously promote careers in agriculture fields across Texas to keep our future invested in the continuance of Texas Agriculture.
T: What distinguishes you from your opponent(s)? Why should people specifically vote for you?
SM: I am running to be your next Agriculture Commissioner because agriculture is vital for continued success in the Great State of Texas. The Texas Department of Agriculture is one of the largest agencies in state government and needs to be led by someone who has an agriculture background, business credentials, and a proven record of fighting for every-day citizens in Austin. I was born and raised in Texas Agriculture. As a fourth generation Texas farmer and rancher I have the most extensive background in this field than any other candidate seeking this post. As a Nurseryman and a farming and ranching business owner, I have the experience of balancing budgets, cutting waste, and effectively managing a full-time working business. I have made my living off the land for 58 years, and I’m 58 years strong in Texas Agriculture. My entire life has been vested in the promotion of Texas Agriculture and I will work hard to promote Texas Agriculture world-wide. As a former rural School Board Member, Ag Teacher, and a six term veteran of the Texas House of Representatives I have a proven record of standing up for Texas citizens against the encroachment of big government. I’ve authored numerous pieces of legislation that have supported our veterans, restored local control, and downsized the state government. As Chairman of the House Agriculture and Livestock Committee I have had direct oversight over the Agriculture Commissioner and the inter-working details of the Department. During my tenure in the Texas House I also served as Chairman of the Homeland Security and Public Safety committee, which centered my energy in establishing Texas’ security and effective solutions to the serious threat on our border. Out of all the candidates in this race, I am the proven conservative champion with a realistic, out in the pasture background in Texas Agriculture and I would be humbled to carry your prayers, support, and votes in the upcoming election for Texas Agriculture Commissioner.
T: What is the most important thing you have learned thus far in the campaign?
SM: I have learned that my trust and belief in the inherent good and strong, traditional values of the people of Texas have remained intact. The people of our state simply want the government to remove itself from their lives so they can raise their families, run their businesses, practice their faith and go about their lives without unneeded intrusions from our federal and state governments. They’re looking for leaders who are honest, transparent, and who share their values. I feel like family on the campaign trail with my fellow Texas patriots!