Red, White & Blue

King, Turner, Hall, McVey Debate On ‘Red, White and Blue’

Election Day is Tuesday—and some of the candidates for Houston mayor are making appearances on TV 8’s public affairs show “Red, White and Blue.”

A large part of the discussion centered on Houston’s finances.

In an effort to bring down the city’s debt, Bill King wants to change Houston’s municipal pension system from a defined benefit to a defined contribution plan, basically like a 401-K.

Sylvester Turner disagrees.

 “West Virginia,” he said. “They shifted from a defined benefit to defined contribution, and the unfunded liability went dramatically up and they reversed course.”

King responded, “The entire private sector has gone to defined contribution but the paragon of financial acumen in the country, West Virginia, has figured this out when all private industry doesn’t agree with that.”

Turner got in one last point, saying, “Private industry and the city of Houston are two different things, Bill.”

On a different issue, Ben Hall said the equal rights ordinance should be changed to deny transgender people the right to use a restroom of their choosing.

“Just assume that in this ordinance, the lawyers had included that we would not discriminate against pedophiles,” he said. “Nobody, I would hope, on this panel, would ever say, let’s pass the ordinance.”

Hall was playing off the claim by opponents of the law that it would allow sex offenders to go into women’s restrooms to harass women and girls.

Marty McVey repeated his call to modernize the city.

“Protect Houstonians and protect the interests of Houstonians,” he said. “And that means we’ve got to tear down government and rebuild it.”  

Early voting ends Friday, and Election Day is on Tuesday.

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Florian Martin

Florian Martin

Business Reporter

Florian Martin is currently the News 88.7 business reporter.Florian’s stories can frequently be heard on other public radio stations throughout Texas and on NPR nationwide. Some of them have earned him awards from Texas AP Broadcasters and the Houston Press Club.Florian is a native of Germany. His studies in Leipzig...

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