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Crenshaw calls for reboot in U.S.-Mexico relations

August 2, 2018

A Houston Republican hoping to win a seat in Congress is calling for a “political reboot” in U.S.-Mexico relations, stressing that the two nations are partners, not enemies.

While President Donald Trump has demanded Mexico pay for a border wall along the U.S. border and has declared Mexico to be “not our friend,” Republican and former Navy SEAL Dan Crenshaw is taking a decidedly different path, calling for a more cooperative relationship with the U.S. supporting the incoming Mexican president’s call for improved security on Mexico’s southern border.

“The United States, and especially Texans, should applaud such efforts and seize this opportunity to partner with Mexico to increase security cooperation and socioeconomic development efforts in Central America,” Crenshaw wrote in a piece published on NationalReview.com.

In May, Crenshaw won the Republican nomination for the Houston-based 2nd Congressional District. Crenshaw faces Democrat Todd Litton in the November election.

Crenshaw makes the case in the National Review article that U.S. border security requires cooperation with Mexico.

“Immigration reform and border security here in the U.S. are necessary and urgent parts of the solution, but so is recognizing that Mexico is a partner on this issue, not an enemy,” Crenshaw wrote.

Crenshaw never mentions Trump by name, but notes that “political relations have clearly been strained by a rhetorically heated debate on border security and NAFTA negotiations.”

Litton said regardless of Crenshaw’s latest writings, he is still backs the wrong ideas when it comes to immigration reform. He said Crenshaw has backed Trump’s call to build a wall on the Mexico border and defended the Trump family separation policies on the border before the Trump administration walked back the policy.

“We need comprehensive immigration reform and that is what I’ll fight for in Congress,” Litton said.

Crenshaw is fast becoming one of the House Republicans’ favorite candidates. In June, Crenshaw picked up big financial support from key House leaders. U.S. House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, D-Calif., and Rep. Kevin Brady, the House Ways and Means Chairman from The Woodlands, sent Crenshaw $5,000 each from political action committees they control.

Litton is getting his own support from House Democrats. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi has donated $7,000 to Litton through her re-election campaign and another political action committee she controls.

The district Litton and Crenshaw are battling in runs from West Houston north to the Montgomery County border, then wraps east to pick up Atascocita and Humble. They are seeking to replace U.S. Rep. Ted Poe, an Atascocita Republican, who is not seeking re-election after nearly 14 years in the House.

jeremy.wallace@chron.com

Twitter.com/JeremySWallace

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