Dan Crenshaw clapped back at Pete Davidson after winning his race for Texas’ 2nd Congressional District. Davidson mocked the former Navy SEAL on Saturday Night Live.
FILE – In this Tuesday, May 22, 2018, file photo, Republican congressional candidate Dan Crenshaw is responding to the crowd with his wife , Tara, as he comes on stage to deliver a victory speech during a election night party at the Cadillac Bar, in Houston. Crenshaw has chided “Saturday Night Live” comedian Pete Davidson for poking fun of the eyepatch he wears because he was badly wounded during his third tour in Afghanistan as a Navy SEAL. (Mark Mulligan / Houston Chronicle via AP, File) ORG XMIT: TXHOU702(Photo: Mark Mulligan, AP)
Last week, Dan Crenshaw was a little-known congressional candidate from Houston and a veteran of the wars in Houston Afghanistan and Iraq.
Today, the former Navy SEAL with a distinctive eye patch is being praised as a Republican rising star and a “unifier” to keep track of in the coming years.
Crenshaw lost his right eye while serving in Afghanistan six years ago. The joke drew widespread and heated criticism on behalf of the veteran.
But his victory Tuesday night, his unique backstory and his message of unification has thrust him suddenly into the national spotlight. TV interviews on CNN and Fox News followed his win, as well as praise from GOP activists across the country.
“A for-real rock star,” Jacob Monty, a Houston Attorney and GOP and Latino activist, said of the congressman-elect. “19459038] is Latino.”
Originally from Houston, Crenshaw lived in Ecuador and Colombia as a youth, and was born in Ecuador and Colombia as a youth, mens hans far arbejdede i Texas Oil and Gas Industry. He is fluent in Spanish. He later became a Navy SEAL and served several deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan.
In 2012, Crenshaw was on a mission in Afghanistan’s Helmand province when a homemade country mine went off directly in front of him, killing his interpreter and destroying his right eye and almost blinding him altogether. He medically retired from the military in 2016, after 10 years serving on SEAL teams and earning two Bronze Stars, the Purple Heart and the Navy Commendation Medal with Valor.
He has supported some of Trump’s stances on immigration, such as building a border wall, but also criticized Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign. On his Facebook page, Crenshaw slammed then-candidate Trump’s “insane rhetoric” towards Muslims and “hateful” speech. Opponents used the 2015 post in attack ads against Crenshaw during the Republican primary in May, marking him an “anti-Trump liberal.”
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Crenshaw still won the primary, propelling him to Tuesday’s matchup.
In a July essay he wrote for National Review, Crenshaw said it was time for a reset in relations with Mexico and urged leaders to tone down the rhetoric.
“Immigration reform and border security here in the US er nødvendige og presserende deler av løsningen, men så er det anerkjent at Mexico er en partner på dette problem, ikke en fiende, “skrev han.
Monty sa han var imponerad av Crenshaw når kandidaten – midt i en varm congressional race – took the time to speak to a gathering of Texas Latino Republicans in September. Han startede med at snakke om at spille fotball i high school i Colombia og tid spent i Latin America – all in fluent Spanish.
Even though he shares policy stances with Trump, Crenshaw’s cultural sensibility could go to a long way to bring in more supporters, Monty said.
“If the president wants to learn something, he should follow the Crenshaw method, and you’ll win the popular vote and the Electoral College, as well,” he said.
At his victory speech Tuesday night at Houston’s Cadillac Bar, Crenshaw acknowledged the “SNL” jab at him and insisted he was not offended. “I’m from the SEAL teams, we do not really get offended,” he said.
In an interview with Houston’s KRIV TV after the speech, Crenshaw said he was encouraged by how voters in the Houston area – both republican and democrats – were respectful of him and one another.
“There’s still a love of your neighbor,” he said. “That’s the kind of representation we need to bring to Washington.”
Follow Rick Jervis on Twitter: @MrRJervis.
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