Gohmert Elected: Republican Says He Won't Be Changed By Washington - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

11/3/04-Tyler

Gohmert Elected: Republican Says He Won't Be Changed By Washington

A big night for Republicans, including East Texas' next congressman who soundly beat his incumbent opponent.

Former Tyler judge Louie Gohmert beat Democrat Congressman Max Sandlin by a wide margin.

With all precincts reporting, Gohmert received 62 percent of the vote. Sandlin got just 38 percent.

Gohmert won all but three of the 13 counties in Congressional District 1, including Max Sandlin's home of Harrison County.

On Gohmert, supporter Robyn Baker: "He's very passionate about representing East Texas, and he's very passionate about influencing the nation."

Mr. Gohmert goes to Washington. What some once thought as an improbable defeat of the incumbent was wiped away by the Republican victory across the country and here at home.

Gohmert, addressing his supporters: "People who have contributed, and given their energy, I owe you so much, and I intend to justify your investment in me."

The Gohmerts say they've invested their own money -- some of their retirement savings -- in this race, and trusted faith to the end.

"I do want to leave this nation better than I found it, and we're not going to leave this world without giving it everything we've got," he said.

The clear victory over Max Sandlin didn't surprise his wife Kathy, or his family. They say they trust Louie, and so did voters.

"I knew he's going to do the right thing whether he's watched or not, and I think he'll do that in Congress, and I think we need that," she said.

Louie Gohmert: "There are a lot of things I'm not going to get done overnight, and I know that. It's like a boulder that if you just chip away at it, it'll get done. And I'll just start chipping when I get there."

He'll be in a Congress with an increased GOP majority, with a chance to shape national politics, policy, and the future. As he thanks his faithful, he says he'll stay true to his roots -- that Washington won't change who he is.

"When we finished the time I owed the Army and we were coming back to East Texas, my wife said, 'Don't you think it's time to go by something more formal than Louie?' I've always been Louie. I don't need any pretense, that's who I am," he said.

Louie Gohmert is now part of the new Republican delegation from Texas. In this last Congress, the state had sixteen Democrats and sixteen Republican representatives. In an interview last week, Governor Rick Perry said Gohmert would be an asset to the state and to the party, and would be able to quickly help shape policy.

"He will be an instant player in Washington D.C., partly because of his capabilities, but secondly because he's from the president's home state. He's in the majority party and he'll quickly learn the ropes and I think quickly, he'll become a go-to type of legislator, Perry said.

Gohmert will take the oath of his office when the 109th Congress convenes January 3rd.

Reported by Morgan Palmer.

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