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Meet the Texas Republican runoff candidates hoping to replace U.S. Rep. Ted Poe

State Rep. Kevin Roberts and retired Navy SEAL Dan Crenshaw will face off in the May 22 Republican primary runoff for Texas' 2nd Congressional District. Hear where the Houston-area candidates stand on issues like the Hurricane Harvey response and gun safety.

The two Republican businessmen vying to replace retiring U.S. Rep. Ted Poe in Texas' 2nd Congressional District are relatively new to Texas politics.

Elected to represent Texas House District 126 in 2016, state Rep. Kevin Roberts, R-Houston, passed a handful of bills in his one term, addressing issues like family crisis services, special education students and regulation by state agencies.

Dan Crenshaw is a retired U.S. Navy SEAL who has never held public office. He took medical retirement from service in 2016, four years after an IED blast in Afghanistan destroyed his right eye. 

Roberts finished first in the March 6 Republican primary, with 33 percent of the vote to Crenshaw's 27 percent. Fewer than 2,600 votes separated the two. The winner of the May runoff will face Democrat Todd Litton in the November general election.

Poe announced his retirement in November after serving the district since 2004. Poe said in a statement at the time that he was ready for something new and looked forward to spending time with his 12 grandkids, "who have all been born since I was first elected to Congress."

During his tenure, Poe has advocated for crime victims and passed legislation to combat human trafficking – issues both Roberts and Crenshaw vow to continue should they succeed him.

The two agree that flood mitigation is top of mind for the thousands of Hurricane Harvey survivors in the district. Each lay out specifics on what projects they'd fight for should they win election to Congress.

In the latest video from our Split Decision campaign debate series, the two Republicans also talked about the addition of a citizenship question on the 2020 U.S. Census and gun safety in schools.

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