Shutdown Spurs MoH Recipient to Run for Congress
The government shutdown appears to have spurred a Medal of Honor recipient to go into politics -- first Congress and then the presidency.
Dakota Meyer, the former Marine sergeant awarded the Medal of Honor for rushing to the rescue of U.S. and Afghan troops pinned down in an ambush in 2009, announced via Twitter just after the government shutdown soon after midnight Tuesday morning.
He tweeted "Congress 2016. POTUS 2024!" at 12:01 am Tuesday, a minute after Congress failed to agree to a budget or a continuing resolution for fiscal year '14.
The simple tweet immediately drew hundreds of positive responses, many of which Meyer retweeted to his more than 23,000 followers. Earlier in the evening he said he was thinking about a run, which was also followed by encouragement from his followers.
On Tuesday afternoon, Meyer appeared to remain resolute in his interest to run for political office as he tweeted: "I want to thank everyone for the overwhelming support & encouragement about my decision to pursue elected office! #makeadifference"
Attempts to contact Meyer as well as the public relations agency that represents Meyer were unsuccessful by press time. However, it's clear Meyer already has supporters.
Retired Navy Capt. Joseph R. John, founder and chairman of the political action committee Combat Veterans for Congress, told Military.com that the PAC "would certainly be pleased to support him in 2016."
Meyer's Tweets typically are nonpolitical. A "Morning Motivation" Tweet -- often a quote from some historical figure about overcoming difficulties -- is daily fare on his account.
But shortly before 11 p.m. Monday, with the government headed toward shutdown, Meyer tweeted: "I've decided that for every day that the federal government shuts down, we shouldn't have to pay federal taxes. What about you??"
After a follower responded with a comment that he should "run for office," Meyer replied that he was thinking about it.
He fired off his Congress/POTUS Tweet just after midnight.
Meyer received the Medal of Honor during a White House ceremony on Sept. 15, 2011, three years after the Battle of Ganjgal in Afghanistan. During the battle, Meyer, then a corporal, braved enemy fire several time to try and locate and save American and Afghan troops pinned down by ambush. The U.S. troops were already dead when he located them but he helped pull their bodies out of the ambush site as well as rescue Afghan troops.
Meyer told his story with retired Marine colonel Bing West, the co-author, in "Into the Fire: A Firsthand Account of the Most Extraordinary Battle in the Afghan War."
Meyer disclosed in the book that he attempted suicide in 2010. The pistol did not fire. He said in the book the experience prompted him to seek help for post-traumatic stress disorder and has since been a role model for other veterans battling with PTSD.
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