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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Texas A&M utility Gavin Grahovac (9) throws the ball during A&Ms game against Georgia on Friday, April 26, 2024, at Olsen Field. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
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Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
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The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Q&A: From classroom to the Capitol


Leighton Schubert, Class of 2005, was recently elected District 13 state representative.

Gracie Mock, The Battalion news reporter, sat down with Leighton Schubert, Class of 2005, District 13 state representative and former Texas A&M student. Schubert took over after a special election and was sworn into office March 3.
THE BATTALION: How did your time at A&M help to shape who you are today?
SCHUBERT: I’m a third generation Aggie, so my Aggie roots go way back. I’m a member of the Class of 2005; I was a communication major. The thing about A&M is that it’s one big family. We all support each other, we’re all behind each other and what you learn at A&M are things like traditions and honesty and integrity, and that carries over to every part of life. A&M is a great place for learning those values and to keep learning those values. The training I had at A&M, the education at A&M, the friends that I’ve made there have helped me throughout my entire life and continues to help now.
THE BATTALION: Why did you decide to run for state representative?? 
SCHUBERT: People started coming to me and saying, “You should run for this,” and I never really had thought about it before. I’ve been involved with government and public service before, but I never thought about being a candidate. Everyone kept asking me about it and I just realized that, you know, I was born and raised in District 13 — District 13 is my home and no one could represent District 13 like I could, so that’s why we decided to put our name on the ballot and run for the position.
THE BATTALION: What kind of political experience do you have?
SCHUBERT: I have worked at every level of government, federal down to county. I’ve worked for the U.S. State Department in Washington and then they sent me to Ecuador and I worked there in the U.S. embassy. I’ve been a law clerk for the attorney general of Texas. I’ve worked for Harris County after law school at their government affairs office, so we drafted legislation and worked through that process. So I’ve worked at every level of government.
THE BATTALION: What are some of the top issues facing the district?
SCHUBERT: District 13 is a rural district, we have rural Texas issues. Land property rights are important to me as a landowner is the district, so protecting private property rights is very important. We have to address our water needs in Texas, not just here in District 13, but across the state. That’s really felt here in a rural district like District 13, so we’re always trying to find ways to increase our water resources and protect our water rights. Those are some of the big issues and across Texas we have to start focusing on our infrastructure, highway infrastructure, because we need to start investing in the future of Texas and the way we need to do that is look at how we can do better about spending our government tax resources and improving our infrastructure.
THE BATTALION: Have you had the chance to sit in a session yet?
SCHUBERT: We’re in session right now, we were elected in a special election and the session began in the early part of January and of course I wasn’t sworn in until this past Tuesday so there’s been about a month and a half of the session that’s gone on before we were sworn in. We were sworn in on Tuesday at noon and about 38 seconds later they said ‘go sit at your desk, we have business to do.’ So we got sworn in and immediately went and sat at our desk on the floor and started doing things. It’s great, we’ve got our staff together, our office is up, they’ve been wonderful helping us transition into this, but we are coming about a month and a half late.
THE BATTALION: What is it like being on the floor as a representative?
SCHUBERT: What I always talked about in the campaign, and this is my personal philosophy of government, as representative it is my job to be the voice of the people of the district and that’s really my sole job. It was a very big honor for me to be elected, but I tell you what, when I walked out onto the floor of the house, the responsibility of the office just really takes you back for a second and you realize what an honor it is to be able to represent the interest of the people of District 13 on the floor. That is something that I will never forget because that’s my personal philosophy, we’re there to represent the people and further the interest of the people of District 13. It’s been the biggest honor I’ve ever had in my life, that’s for sure.

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