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Military vet again eyes unseating Gohmert

By by Naomi Prioleau nprioleau@news-journal.com
Aug. 10, 2013 at 10 p.m.


MARSHALL - A military veteran announced her bid Saturday to seek the Democratic nomination to face U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert in November 2014.

Dr. Shirley McKellar told a crowd at the Harrison County Courthouse that she will seek to replace Gohmert in representing the 1st Congressional District.

McKellar describes herself as a "conservative Democrat."

"It pains me so much that Louie Gohmert continually shows such a lack of respect for East Texans," she said. "I believe that to be a good leader you need to show respect, cooperation and humility, yet this congressman shows none of these qualities."

She added that while Gohmert has served, she believes he hasn't done anything productive for East Texas.

"He's been in Washington (D.C.) for five terms, he's not offered any bills that have brought anything real to East Texas such as jobs," she said. "So I'm going to be fighting for the greater good of all mankind and not just the wealthy. America's the United States of America, not the Republican States of America or the Democrat States of America."

McKellar said she chose to announce her bid in Marshall because of how supportive the residents were to her during her last run for Congress in 2012.

"I think Marshall reflects what East Texas really is, and that's the history and the resources," she said. "Marshall, Texas was very supportive of me in my run during 2012."

McKellar said her platform is based on such issues as education and the treatment of military veterans. She said after she was injured in the Army and seeing how veterans were treated, she wanted to help them.

"I served in Operation Iraqi Freedom, and I was actually injured during my service there and ended up spending over a year in the hospital in San Antonio. ... I saw a lot of things happen to veterans that I did not like, so that actually pushed me to run for the seat," she said.

The slogan for her campaign is "The Boots are Back," which she said represents not only her time in the military but also that it's time to return to working hard in Congress.

"The boots are back, and this represents hard work, and I'm very accustomed to hard work. I've always been taught that by my parents, by my grandparents, so they taught me a work ethic. ... I want to show 18-34 year olds how important they are, because they are our future. ... I'm encouraging 18-34 (year-olds) to come out to make sure they get the education they want," McKellar said. "The boots are my military boots that I served in ... so I pulled them out to put them back to work again."

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