By David McLain
Embedded deep within the hubbub of the election day, largely seen as the day the president is decided, is the election for the seat of the Texas State Representative from District 56.
Republican incumbent Charles “Doc” Anderson defeated Libertarian candidate Neill Snider to gain re-election. Anderson won by 79.47 percent, getting 38,521 votes.
“I am honored to serve as a representative in the great state of Texas,” Anderson said.
Anderson will serve for two years — the length of a term in the Texas House of Representatives. House District 56 consists most of McLennan County, excluding the east corner of the county and a small part of Waco.
Anderson was first elected as State Representative for District 56 in 2004, and was reelected for the 2006 and 2008 terms of office. He is a practicing veterinarian at Anderson Veterinarian Hospital in Waco.
Snider garnered 20.53 percent with 9,953 votes. This was an increase also from the 2008 general election when he received 3.64 percent of the vote. Snider owns and operates Neill Mechanical Technology in Waco. Snider focused his platform to four specific points: cut taxes and spending, end the war on drugs, relief for small businesses and liberty for the Latinos, said Snider’s website.
“I’m dissatisfied with the loss, but satisfied with the twenty percent,” Snider said.
Anderson’s campaign platform focused on representing small businesses.
Greg Jones, a Waco small business owner and local Tea Party organizer firmly placed his support behind Anderson.
“Having gotten to know him over the past four years, honesty, initiative, drive, hard work; these are certainly qualification for the kind of guy that I’m interested in electing,” Jones said. “I didn’t even know he had an opponent.”
In past terms, Anderson introduced legislation concerning school bus safety belts and Jessica’s Law, a bill promoting harsher punishments for sex offenders and legislation concerning voter identification. Anderson also
helped secure funding for projects such as the new headquarters for Texas Rangers Company F, a wing of the Texas Ranger Hall of Fame and Museum and funding for the Waco skate park and Texas State Technical College.
Anderson has been working as a veterinarian while in office, and has been a practicing veterinarian in Waco since 1981.
“I think its excellent that they have politicians in business,” Jones said.
Jones said one of his biggest shops is just down the street from Anderson Veterinary Hospital.
“He knows what we’re going through,” Jones said. “He’s on the ground, on the streets. He knows what all of us on the streets are going through.”
In the 90s, Anderson began to get involved with organizations like Texas Association of Business and the National Association of Independent Businesses. The more I got involved with these organizations the more they wanted me to be involved, and working with these organizations made for a smoother transition into public office, Anderson said. “It hit me one night that science, working with critters and working with people they all go together,” Anderson said.