HOUSTON (FOX 26) - In the Republican rumble to replace retiring Congressman Ted Poe, Kevin Roberts is encouraging voters to simply remember that he's been in their community for the past two decades and, for the most part, retired Navy SEAL Dan Crenshaw has not.
"Let’s talk about substance, where if you've never served, all you have is campaign messaging and I promise you, there is a huge difference," said Roberts.
A serving Texas State Representative, Roberts says people on the north side of Houston have his legislative track a record to follow, whereas a vote for Crenshaw represents a roll of the dice.
"Putting that hat on where you have to slog through policy, you have to build relationships, you have to stand in the gap, regardless of what special interest groups want you to do or other factions and say, I will vote for what's best for my district," said Roberts.
But with Crenshaw reaping high-profile endorsements from radio host Michael Berry and Houston business & philanthropy icon Jim 'Mattress Mack' McIngvale, many believe the 34-year-old political newcomer has seized the momentum.
Former State Representative Patricia Harless said, for her, Crenshaw's candidacy poses too many unanswered questions.
"I don't want someone who votes just down party lines or just for some outside group that gives them lots of money," said Harless. "I want someone who lives and works here and understands our issues and votes for our issues."
Crenshaw responded to Roberts by telling FOX 26 News, "I may be new to politics, but not to public service."