On Thursday, combat veteran and Purple Heart recipient Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) was confronted by two veterans from progressive anti-Trump activist group Common Defense.
Taping the interaction, the two men, identified by Newsweek as U.S. Army veterans Jason Hurd and Purple Heart recipient Alan Pitts, questioned Crenshaw’s “courage” for supporting President Donald Trump. The men told the Republican that there have been numerous “impeachable” offenses and “crimes” committed by the president that Crenshaw is ignoring.
“How can you let a criminal like Donald Trump run roughshod over our democracy and shred everything that you and I fought for?” one of the Common Defense activists asked the congressman. “Like c’mon, man. How can you just sit there idly by and not do your duty? We need your leadership right now. You cannot be complicit in this man’s crimes. It is immoral.”
“I know you’re here to make a video,” Rep. Crenshaw told him, before being interrupted.
“You are not stepping up to the plate,” the man tells Crenshaw, adding, “How are you gonna let [Trump] just cozy up to dictators?” Raising his voice, the man shouts at Crenshaw, “How are you gonna just let him lock kids in cages? Like, c’mon, dude!”
Crenshaw looks at the man and tells him he needs to “calm down.”
“Are you kidding me?” the activist shouts back.
Crenshaw sternly and calmly replies, “No.”
“You need to get your courage back!” he tells Crenshaw.
“Courage? You want to talk to me about courage?” the congressman responds.
“Yes, we are talking to you about courage,” the men tell Crenshaw, noting that they are fellow combat veterans.
Crenshaw admonishes the men for “yelling and screaming” instead of discussing the issues before heading for a private elevator at the Cannon House Office Building.
“Read the Mueller report!” the activist tells Crenshaw, entering the elevator. “There are ten impeachable obstruction offenses,” he claims.
“This is a member-only elevator,” Crenshaw tells him. “You got to make your video. You didn’t come here to have a conversation. … As veterans, we should be smarter about how we talk about things.”
The doors momentarily close with one of the veterans joining Crenshaw. “Now that we don’t have video anymore —,” the rep can be heard saying before the doors are fully opened up by the man with the video camera. “I thought we were gonna have a real conservation for a second.”
“You’re gonna let a criminal get away with our democracy,” the Common Defense activist shouts. “He is a criminal.”
“You are repeating things; it’s not a conversation,” Crenshaw responds.
The Republican then gets out of the elevator and walks away from the men, being told he’s not doing his “duty.” The last moment on video is Mr. Crenshaw telling the men to “keep walking.”
According to Common Defense’s website, one of the group’s active campaigns centers around impeaching President Trump.
“When the Commander in Chief himself has put our democracy at risk and committed numerous crimes, we cannot afford to take half-measures. As veterans, the oath we swore to uphold the Constitution leads us to one conclusion: Donald Trump must be impeached,” the site reads. As noted by Newsweek, the organization was “founded in 2016 by ‘veterans who oppose Trump’s corrupt agenda of hate.'”
Crenshaw lost his eye during his third deployment from an improvised explosive device (IED) blast.
“Dan was hit by an IED blast during a mission in Helmand province, Afghanistan,” the Republican’s campaign website explains. “He was evacuated and awoke from his medically induced coma learning that his right eye had been destroyed in the blast and his left eye was still present, but badly damaged. Dan was completely blind and the doctors did not believe he would ever see again. Tara stood by him every day and night, keeping faith and praying he would see again. After several difficult surgeries, he eventually regained sight in his left eye, a miracle according to the head surgeon.”
The freshman congressman served two more deployments following the serious injury and has received recognitions including two Bronze Stars and a Purple Heart.
GOP Rep @DanCrenshawTX hid in an elevator today when combat vets confronted him about his support for Donald Trump.
— Common Defense (@commondefense) September 20, 2019