PUBLISHED: 1:05 AM 19 Jan 2018

2018 Races Heat Up As Wounded Navy SEAL Announces Texas Retirement Seat Surprise

Jacqueline Havelka by
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Ted Poe has served in the U.S. House of Representatives since 2005.

Dan Crenshaw is a retired Navy SEAL who is embarking on a new, exciting journey in 2018. Not for the fainthearted, Crenshaw has decided to enter the crazy world of politics.

He will battle for the U.S. House seat left open in Texas by the retiring Ted Poe. Crenshaw is no stranger to battles or adversity. He is a combat veteran who served in both Iraq as well as Afghanistan. He served in military leadership posts in both South Korea and Bahrain. While serving a third combat tour in 2012 in Afghanistan, Crenshaw was wounded by an improvised explosive device (IED) in the dangerous territory of the Helmand province. He lost his right eye and the IED did severe damage to his left eye.

His medical outlook was not good. Physicians told Crenshaw he would never see again, but after several surgeries, he did regain sight in his left eye. He now wears a special contact lens to aid his eyesight. He wears an eye patch over his glass eye prosthesis, and amazingly after four months, was back in training with his fellow Navy SEALS on a Mississippi shooting range.

Military veteran Crenshaw will run with nine others for Poe’s vacant seat.

It’s an understatement to say he’s tough. He had a medical retirement from the Navy in 2016, and wasn’t ready to stop serving his country. When he found out Ted Poe was retiring, he decided to throw his beret in the ring and run in the Republican primary.

“What makes me get up in the morning is knowing I’m doing something for the country and I was not ready to quit that,” Crenshaw explained. He went on to say that serving in Congress is a new path he can take to impact lives in a positive way, and to continue serving in a meaningful way to ensure values he believes in.

The race for Texas’ 2nd Congressional district seat is very, very competitive. In all, ten candidates will compete in the March 9 primary, including state lawmaker Kevin Roberts. Crenshaw is one of three military veterans seeking the seat. Retired Army Lieutenant Jonny Havens, an Iraq veteran, is running as is Jon Spiers, a former Army Reserve surgeon. Two Texas businessmen, David Balat and Rick Walker, are also running.

Everything is bigger in Texas!

The frontrunner at least so far is Kathaleen Wall, businesswoman from the Houston-based tech company Texas Memory Systems. Wall is a dyed-in-the-wool Texan and generous Republican donor.

Crenshaw explains that his military leadership sets him apart from the other candidates and provides him with unique insight into national security. Crenshaw is an outspoken advocate of President Trump’s tough stance on North Korea. He says Trump is right to deal with Kim Jong Un the way that he is. “We have to jolt the system a little bit. As crazy as the rhetoric sounds to a lot of people, [Trump] has to provide that credible threat in order to bring the Chinese onboard to pressure North Korea and really make some changes with the regime’s behavior.”

Crenshaw has a master’s degree in public administration from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, and says he understands the domestic side of serving in Congress, too, vowing to protect Americans from high taxes and government overstep.

All 10 candidates are tough on illegal immigration.

Crenshaw explained it this way, “Our vision should be one of optimism, one of limited government, where we first ask what we can do for our community and our country and not the other way around.”

These ten candidates have big shoes to fill. Ted Poe (R-Texas) announced in November that he would not be seeking reelection to Texas’ 2nd Congressional district. Poe is a leukemia survivor; he says he’s in good health, but the 70-year-old is stepping down because it is time to retire. “Thanks to the good Lord, I’m in good health, but it’s time for the next step,” Poe said in a statement.

Poe is the kind of plain-talking, tough stance person you think of when you think of Texas. He is a sixth generation Texan, icon and lone star legend. As a former prosecutor and judge, he was tough as nails on the bench. He has tirelessly worked to combat human trafficking and violence against women, and to ensure that crime victims have a voice.

Poe has always taken a tough stance on crime.

The Humble Tribune describes it this way:

Criminal justice has always been a hallmark issue during his entire career. He is famous for his signature style of Poe-tic justice. Indeed Judge Poe is famous for his creative and unusual sentencing. For example, he regularly ordered convicted child molesters to post warning signs on their homes stating ‘No children under the age of 18 allowed on these premises by court order.’ He has been known to sentence shoplifters to return to the store they stole from, all the while carrying a sign disclosing their crime to passersby.”

Poe simply said that a ‘judge should try to get the attention of the offenders by making the sentence mean something. I found that it did work. It took more effort on my part, but it kept people from coming back through the system.’”

“Criminal justice has always been a hallmark issue during his entire career. He is famous for his signature style of “Poe-tic justice.” Indeed Judge Poe is famous for his creative and unusual sentencing. For example, he regularly ordered convicted child molesters to post warning signs on their homes stating “No children under the age of 18 allowed on these premises by court order.” He has been known to sentence shoplifters to return to the store they stole from, all the while carrying a sign disclosing their crime to passersby.”

If only Sheila Jackson Lee were retiring–sigh!!

“Poe simply said that a ‘judge should try to get the attention of the offenders by making the sentence mean something. I found that it did work. It took more effort on my part, but it kept people from coming back through the system.'”

Sounds like a plan.