Gohmert’s Magic Powder Theory More Dangerous Than His Regular Crazy, Opponent Says
April 10, 2020
TYLER, Texas–Congressman Louie Gohmert’s magic German powder theory to kill Coronavirus is far more dangerous than his usual crazy, Hank Gilbert, (D-Tyler) a businessman, cattle rancher, and former educator opposing the 15-year incumbent in the November general election said Friday. Gilbert’s comments were in response to the non-partisan website PolitiFact’s rating of Gohmert’s statements on this topic as, “pants on fire.”
“This is worse than ‘Terror Babies.’ This is worse than naming the whistleblower. This is worse than his conspiracy theory that the Obama administration was filled with members of the Muslim Brotherhood,” said Gilbert. “We have people drinking fish tank chemicals because they mistake it for a drug the President mentions in a daily briefing. This is not the time for irresponsible running of the mouth, this is a time for leadership,” Gilbert said.
“Louie Gohmert is giving people false hope and false information with his fairytale story of magic German powder,” Gilbert continued. “I encourage the American public to listen to the CDC and medical professionals, reliable, truthful, local leaders, and local health authorities during this crisis,” Gilbert said.
“We cannot have members of Congress running off at the mouth about things that are not true concerning COVID-19. It is dangerous. Louie Gohmert’s regular crazy is one thing, but this time, his crazy is dangerous. It doesn’t matter if you are a Democrat, Republican, or independent, but if you hold public office, you hold the public trust, and if the public can’t trust you, then the public has a problem,” Gilbert said. “That problem is you, Congressman Gohmert, for many counties across East Texas.”
Statement of Hank Gilbert on Gohmert’s Coronavirus Aid Actions
March 16, 2020
The following is the statement of Hank Gilbert concerning Louie Gohmert’s attempts today to further stall the Coronavirus aid legislation:
“It is par for the course that Louie Gohmert would resort to delaying the Coronavirus aid package. He continues to be less concerned about the people of East Texas and all Americans than he is adhering to his own, narrow-minded political ideology.
The American people need help and leaders who are willing to get things done, not a scene from a screwball comedy, which is what Gohmert regularly delivers.”
Gilbert Announces Plan to Safely Reopen American Commerce
April 27, 2020
PROPOSES MANDATORY SICK LEAVE
TYLER, Texas–Hank Gilbert, Democratic Candidate for Congress in Texas’ First Congressional District, on Monday announced a multi-part plan to safely re-open American commerce and prepare the United States for future pandemics.
Key to Gilbert’s proposal is funding for up to 100,000 workers to expedite testing of every American, and vastly expanded contact tracing, as well as funding to create more testing kits, and the chemical testing agents required for those kits.
“We cannot safely reopen all of American commerce without knowing who is positive for COVID-19 and who is not,” Gilbert said. “An expanded testing and contact tracing program is necessary in order for us to re-open our economy. We cannot reopen our economy safely without expanded testing and contact tracing,” Gilbert said.
Gilbert also criticized his opponent, incumbent Louie Gohmert (R-Tyler) for failing to come up with a plan to reopen the economy.
“After nearly two decades in Congress, and his multiple attempts to halt stimulus payments to Americans and aid to small business in Congress, Louie Gohmert should be on the front lines of helping America find a solution. Instead, he just wants to obstruct what others are doing,” Gilbert said.
Gilbert also proposed that Congress immediately enact a permanent program providing every American worker with 14-days of mandatory paid sick leave, and 30 days mandatory paid sick leave to persons impacted by COVID-19 or any future global pandemic. Gilbert also proposed a direct to small business, zero-interest loan program to help businesses with fewer than 15 employees absorb the cost of mandatory paid sick leave for the next three years.
“After three years of government assistance to help facilitate mandatory paid sick leave, American businesses should be better-suited to understand that paid sick leave must be a cost of doing business in this country,” Gilbert said.
“Mandatory paid sick leave is something that my opponent will undoubtedly attack, but the reality is that too many American families live paycheck to paycheck. In spite of sometimes working two or even three jobs, Americans in my district don’t have the kind of savings necessary if they even come down with the flu and are out of work two weeks. In fact, in most cases, they’d just lose their jobs,” he said.
“Mandatory paid sick leave, quite frankly, is what our country should be doing for our fellow Americans. As a Christian, I believe that we must look after those who need our help, and mandatory paid sick leave, to me, is a very Christian value,” Gilbert said.
REOPENING AMERICA: A Plan To Safely Allow American Business To Reopen While Protecting American Consumers
When examining what steps must be taken to safely re-start the economy, we must take a holistic approach since action in one area necessitates action in another. With this in mind, Gilbert proposes the following:
TESTING, TRACING, AND CONTAINMENT
1) EXPANDED NATIONWIDE TESTING – We must use the Defense Production Act, and Congress must appropriate money for, the creation of equipment and re-agents to allow the country to increase COVID-19 testing capacity. Eventually, every American must be tested. However, in order to safely return American businesses to work, we must produce enough tests and test every person in this country before they return to work to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
2) CONTACT TRACING MUST BECOME THE AMERICAN STANDARD — Congress must appropriate funds and require the Department of Health and Human Services and Homeland Security to coordinate efforts to generate contact tracing plans for every state and county in the nation. This money must come from the federal government and pass through the states to pay for this. This program must include funding for a program to hire up to 100,000 workers nationally to expedite both testing and contact tracing for all people who test positive for COVID-19. Congress must also immediately fund the development of a smartphone application in conjunction with the leading mobile telephone providers and leading operating system providers to advise all people who were within 250 feet of a known positive, details of where the positive was and advising them to seek testing immediately.
3) QUARANTINE AND ISOLATION OF THOSE TESTING POSITIVE. Ideally, those who test positive will be able to self-quarantine. Should that not be the case, Congress must appropriate funds to allow the President to use the Defense Production Act to activate unused, or underutilized, hotels, apartment complexes, and other over-night facilities to help those who have tested positive quarantine for 14 days without harming the public or their families. On day 15, a test should be administered and then another 72 hours later. Should both be negative, the person would be released from quarantine. As part of this process, Congress must appropriate emergency funds to utilize existing at-home feeding programs such as Meals on Wheels to ensure those who are quarantined at home or elsewhere may receive food and other items if they are unable to procure them on their own.
4) ANTI-BODY TESTING IMPLEMENTATION. Congress must appropriate funds so that anti-body testing may be broadly implemented nation wide by June 15.
RE-OPENING AMERICA. In conjunction with the Testing, Tracing, and Containment plan, Congress must establish national public health standards that states and local governments must follow in order to re-open businesses. This legislation must include:
1) Congress must pass legislation for pass-through funding to states to fund States must be required to pass regulations requiring temperature testing, masks, and other measures at all American businesses. Management at all businesses reopening will procure OTS IR thermometers and test all employees and patrons as they enter the business. Hand wash sinks, masks, hand sanitizer, etc. will be required in all businesses. States who do not implement such standards will become ineligible to receive any federal government funding from Health and Human Services.
2) Congress must pass legislation to provide funds for Health and Human Services to operate and maintain a state and county database of all testing facilities, which anyone in need can access from the homepage of HHS.gov.
3) Congress must pass legislation to allow Health and Human Services and the U.S. Department of Education to generate guidelines for schools and daycare facilities, and provide pass-through funding to the states for implementation, to facilitate re-opening for the 2020-2021 school year. This will give American public schools and daycare facilities the time they need to plan for social distancing.
MANDATORY PAID SICK LEAVE
All American businesses must provide 14 days of mandatory paid sick leave on a permanent basis, and 30 days of mandatory paid sick leave for persons impacted by COVID-19 or another global pandemic. Through the Small Business Administration, the federal government will create a direct loan program to help businesses with fewer than 15 employees at all locations, providing zero interest loans for the next three years until American businesses become accustom to including this as a cost of business in their business plans.
PREPARING FOR THE NEXT PANDEMIC
1) The United States must immediately begin work on treatment protocols/Vaccine development with WHO.
2) Hank Gilbert will propose legislation to direct the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to establish an Infectious Disease Taskforce to coordinate the collection efforts and intelligence gathering for all US entities currently working on infectious diseases. As part of this, CDC will also be funded to create a High Performance Computing platform to expand their existing efforts on COVID-19, in order to quickly assess new pathogenic disease and begin work on treatment protocols and cures.
3) Hank will propose legislation enabling the Department of Health and Human Services to be given the ability to implement a contact tracing plan and pandemic response plan in the event of another outbreak in the US of a novel pathogen without requiring Presidential authority.
PUNISHING THOSE PROFITING FROM A PANDEMIC
1) Hank will propose legislation giving the Food and Drug Administration the authority to immediately shut down any entity providing unproven ‘cures’ for COVID-19 and refer those offering such cures to DOJ for prosecution.
2) Hank will propose legislation to create a Congressional blue-ribbon commission to begin full-scale investigations into why the U.S. was caught so unprepared for this and to determine why the federal response was so botched.
Gilbert Condemns Gohmert’s Vote Against Anti-Lynching Bill
February 26, 2020
TYLER, Texas–Tyler businessman and rancher Hank Gilbert on Wednesday afternoon questioned why 15-year incumbent Congressman Louie Gohmert voted against the Emmett Till Anti-Lynching Act, which would have made lynching a federal crime.
Gohmert was one of only four members in the U.S. House of Representatives to vote against the legislation.
“When I saw this vote come across, I could not believe it,” said Gilbert, who is running to unseat Gohmert in November.
“I had to look at the calendar and see if it was 2020 or 1920 when I saw that vote,” said Gilbert. “It is unconscionable that a sitting congressman would not vote to make lynching a federal crime,” Gilbert said.
Gilbert was joined in his condemnation of Gohmert’s actions by the leadership of the Texas Coalition of Black Democrats, and leaders and pastors from across Congressional District 1.
“After 100 years of trying to pass anti-lynching legislation, it is sad that a Texas Congressman, Louie Gohmert, was among the four ‘no’ votes against this bill,” said Hon. Carrol G. Robinson, Esq., State Chairman of the Texas Coalition of Black Democrats.
“After over 400 lynchings in Texas from 1885 to 1942, we should be at the point where lynching is universally condemned in our society,” Robinson said. “It is sad Congressman Gohmert wouldn’t vote for lynching to be a federal crime,” he said.
Rev. Alex Mills, a longtime community leader in Nacogdoches, said Gohmert was behind the times with his vote.
“I think Gohmert is probably 100 years behind the times on these issues and his votes,” Mills said.
“I wouldn’t expect that from a representative these days. It just shows evidence that throughout America, especially in Texas, that they are trying to roll back the clock,” Mills said.
“That is not only terrible. There is another word for it–tragic. It is tragic that the mentality of the present people hasn’t changed from the people 75 years ago,” said Mills.
Smith County Commissioner JoAnn Hampton also said Gohmert should have voted for the legislation.
“I am shocked that our Congressman would vote against making lynching a federal crime,” said Commissioner Hampton. “Lynching should be a federal hate crime. While there may only be a ten-year penalty in the federal legislation, we must start somewhere. We have been trying to pass this bill in this country for 100 years,” Hampton continued.
Former Tyler City Councilman and longtime Tyler area pastor and community leader Ralph Caraway also said Gohmert’s vote wasn’t in touch with current views.
“In this day and time when we talk about togetherness, it is sad we would still vote against legislation that makes what is essentially a human rights violation a federal crime,” Caraway said.
“I continue to be appalled by Gohmert’s reasoning and his votes,” said Gilbert. “Robert Henson Hilliard. James Hodges. Daniel Sutton. Joe Adams. These are the names of just a few of the people who were lynched in Congressional District 1. Gohmert needs to read about some of the lynchings that occurred in this district, and maybe he’d change his mind. However, it appears he’s too busy carrying Donald Trump’s water to be concerned about what the people in his district think,” Gilbert said.
Gilbert Condemns Gohmert’s Comments On Expunging President’s Record
February 5, 2020
TYLER–Hank Gilbert, Democratic candidate for United States Congress against Louie Gohmert in Texas’ First Congressional District, on Wednesday condemned Gohmert’s comments in which the 14-year incumbent said Congress should work toward expunging President Trump’s record following today’s impeachment vote in the Senate.
“Why Louie Gohmert would want to waste Congress’ time with expunging President Trump’s impeachment record is beyond me. No matter what Louie and his friends in Congress do, Trump was impeached by the House and acquitted by the Senate. There is no reason to alter the record at this point,” Gilbert said.
“This is just another example of Louie Gohmert being out of touch with East Texas values,” Gilbert said. “East Texans want Gohmert working to save rural hospitals, improve our transportation infrastructure, and working to rebuild our manufacturing base and bring more good jobs to East Texas,” Gilbert said.
“Furthermore, why doesn’t Louie get with his buddy President Trump and try to snag some of those alleged 12,074 new manufacturing plants for East Texas.”
“Maybe he won’t because even Louie knows how bogus that number is,” he continued.
Gohmert Further Embarasses Texas With Impeachment Antics
December 18, 2019
Gilbert Says Gohmert’s Actions Raise More Questions About His Time In Ukraine
TYLER, Texas–Louie Gohmert’s antics on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives during impeachment proceedings today further embarrassed East Texas and his constituents, and raises additional questions about his time in Ukraine, his opponent, Hank Gilbert (D-Tyler), said Wednesday afternoon.
“Louie Gohmert spit out so much Russian propaganda in his two minute speech C-SPAN might as well have switched to covering the Russian State Duma,” said Gilbert.
Further, Gilbert said, Gohmert’s continuing to spout off about the Ukraine should make voters wonder about his personal ties to the Ukraine.
“Gohmert was in the Ukraine for several days during the key dates in the impeachment timeline,” said Gilbert. “To date, he hasn’t answered for his own time in the Ukraine,” Gilbert continued.
“Once again, he’s embarrassed his district in front of millions of people. I hope people from around the country who see him on TV don’t think that all East Texans are that unbalanced and full of lies,” Gilbert continued.
Gilbert Condemns Gohmert for Naming Alleged Whistleblower
December 11, 2019
TYLER–Hank Gilbert, (D-Tyler), candidate for United States Congress against Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Tyler), condemned the 14-year incumbent for naming the alleged whistleblower in the Ukraine case at the heart of the impeachment.
“It is absolutely unconscionable that Louie Gohmert would name the alleged whistleblower during a televised hearing,” Gilbert said.
“This conduct is sadly typical of what we’ve seen from him over the last fourteen years. However, this time his headline grabbing antics are putting real people at risk. It is disgusting,” he said.
“Even though Louie Gohmert has actually done this very thing before, doing it before a televised audience of millions is a new low, even for this goober,” Gilbert said.
“Louie Gohmert is doing this for attention, to deflect from the strong charges against President Trump. He is breaking the law–because revealing the whistleblower’s identity is breaking the law–because defending a corrupt president who has no defense is more important to him than common sense and decency,” Gilbert said.
“No matter where you stand on President Trump, you cannot support revealing damaging information that damages national security and puts lives in danger,” Gilbert said.
Gohmert’s Ukranian Visit, Ties Questioned
December 10, 2019
Gilbert Says Gohmert Must Come Clean About His Time in Ukraine During Key Points In Corruption Timeline
TYLER, Texas–Hank Gilbert, Candidate for U.S. Congress in Texas’ First Congressional District, on Tuesday called on Louie Gohmert (R-Tyler) to come clean about his time in the Ukraine immediately after key 2018 events in the Trump-Ukraine impeachment timeline.
According to Congressional financial disclosure forms, Gohmert and his wife received an all-expense paid trip to Kiev, Ukraine from May 29 through June 2 of 2018. The trip, according to federal disclosure forms, was paid for by The Ukrainian Prayer Breakfast Organizing Committee. This trip occurred just weeks after the former Ukrainian government agreed to stop cooperating with Special Counsel Robert Mueller, which led to the Trump Administration finally releasing Javelin missiles to Ukraine.
“It seems very strange to me that Congressman Gohmert would spend, assuming travel time, at least three days in Ukraine a couple weeks after Pete Sessions wrote the State Department asking for Marie Yavanovitch to be dismissed, and days after two Soviet-born business associates of Rudy Guiliani were donating $325,000 to a Trump-connected super PAC,” Gilbert said.
“Why would someone like Gohmert, at that time a member of the Majority in the House, be in Ukraine so long? The prayer breakfast appears to have been a one day event. Where was he the rest of the time,” Gilbert asked. “And, even if that was his only event, who did he have contact with there,” he continued.
Gilbert said that Gohmert’s time in Ukraine could explain the frequently bizarre conspiracy theories Gohmert brings up about the Ukraine.
“Perhaps someone whispered in his ear at the Ukrainian Prayer Breakfast. We’d know if he released the names of people he met with in Ukraine,” Gilbert said.
Gilbert noted that there remained many unanswered questions about Gohmert’s time in the Ukraine and the Ukrainian Prayer Breakfast.
“Were you visiting orphanages or oligarchs in the Ukraine, Congressman? Because I’m not 100 percent sure you shouldn’t be a witness before the House Judiciary Committee,” Gilbert said.
“Tell us who paid for your trip, exactly. And tell us who funds the Ukrainian Prayer Breakfast. Where did you stay while in Ukraine? Were you given the talking points you spout about that country while you were over there, or are they from the White House,” Gilbert asked.
“Gohmert needs to come clean about his time in Ukraine. If he will provide his full schedule for those few days, and the names of the people he met with, it might clear up a lot,” Gilbert said. “It sure seems convenient he was over there during this time, if not suspicious,” Gilbert concluded.
According to Congressional financial disclosure forms, Gohmert and his wife received an all-expense paid trip to Kiev, Ukraine from May 29 through June 2 of 2018. The trip, according to federal disclosure forms, was paid for by The Ukranian Prayer Breakfast Organizing Committee.
“It seems very strange to me that Congressman Gohmert would spend, assuming travel time, at least three days in the Ukraine a couple weeks after Pete Sessions wrote the State Department asking for Marie Yavanovitch to be dismissed, and days after two Soviet-born business associates of Rudy Guiliani were donating $325,000 to a Trump-connected super PAC,” Gilbert said.
“The prayer breakfast appears to have been a one day event. Where was he the rest of the time,” Gilbert asked. “And, even if that was his only event, who did he have contact with at the breakfast and during the rest of his time in Ukraine,” he continued.
Gilbert said that Gohmert’s time in Ukraine could explain the frequently bizarre conspiracy theories the 14-year incumbent brings up about the Ukraine.
“Perhaps someone whispered in his ear at the Ukranian Prayer Breakfast. We’d know if he released the names of people he met with in Ukraine,” Gilbert said.
Gilbert noted that there remained many unanswered questions about Gohmert’s time in the Ukraine and the Ukranian Prayer Breakfast.
“Were you visiting orphanages or oligarchs in the Ukraine, Congressman? Because I’m not 100 percent sure you shouldn’t be a witness before the House Judiciary Committee, instead of sitting in judgement of the President,” Gilbert said.
“Account for all of your time in the Ukraine, Congressman. Tell us who paid for your trip, exactly. And tell us who funds the Ukranian Prayer Breakfast. Where did you stay while in Ukraine? Were you given the talking points you spout about that country while you were over there, or are they from the White House,” Gilbert asked.
“Gohmert needs to come clean about his time in Ukraine. If he will provide his full schedule for those few days, and the names of the people he met with, it might clear up a lot,” Gilbert said. “It sure seems convenient he was over there during this time, if not suspicious,” Gilbert concluded.
KEY TIMELINE (Source for non Gohmert events)
Two Soviet-born business associates of Presidential attorney Rudolph Giuliani, Parnas and Igor Fruman, attend a fundrising event for a pro-Trump Super PAC. The event is held at Trump’s Washington hotel. While speaking with Trump, they badmouth U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, and Trump immediately suggests she be fired, according to Parnas.
April 30, 2018
Poroshenko announces the first shipment of Javelins from the United States have arrived.
May 1, 2018
Parnas and Fruman meet Trump at the White House, according to later-deleted Facebook photos.
May 4, 2018
Three Democratic senators — Robert Menendez (N.J.), Richard J. Durbin (Ill.) and Patrick J. Leahy (Vt.) — write to Lutsenko, urging him to continue working with Mueller.
May 9, 2018
Parnas posts a photo of him and his business partner David Correia meeting with Rep. Pete Sessions (R-Tex.) in Sessions’s Capitol Hill office. The two men commit to raise $20,000 for Sessions, according to their later indictments.
May 9, 2018
That same day, Pete Sessions writes to the State Department seeking the dismissal of Yovanovitch. Sessions says he has “received notice of concrete evidence” that she had “spoken privately and repeatedly about her disdain for the current Administration.”
May 17, 2018
Parnas and Fruman contribute $325,000 to the pro-Trump super PAC America First Action through a newly formed business named Global Energy Producers, which is supposedly a liquefied natural gas company. In their later indictments, prosecutors will say the funds actually came from a $1.26 million private lending transaction that occurred two days earlier.
May 21, 2018
Parnas posts a picture on Facebook showing him and Fruman at breakfast with Donald Trump Jr. in Beverly Hills, Calif.
May 29, 2018 – June 2, 2018
Louie Gohmert receives all-expense paid trip to Kiev for Ukranian Prayer Breakfast.
Gohmert’s Financial Disclosures showing trip to Ukraine
Article about a pastor showing the 2018 Breakfast Gohmert attended. Note the police presence, others mentioned, shown in photos.
Gohmert Continues to Obstruct Impeachment Process
December 9, 2019
TYLER, Texas–Congressman Louie Gohmert (R-Tyler) continued to obstruct the work of the House Judiciary Committee on Monday, proudly announcing that he was not going to use his time to ask questions, rather making a disjointed, rambling statement before yielding back the remainder of his time during Monday’s impeachment hearings.
“It was typical Louie,” said Hank Gilbert (D-Tyler), the rancher and small business owner who is running against the 14-year incumbent.
“Louie Gohmert has been an embarrassment to our district for years. Today, he just widened his reach by embarrassing us in front of the more than 10 million people watching the hearings,” Gilbert said.
“As much as Louie Gohmert has said President Trump is innocent and that impeachment is a witch hunt that will lead to a civil war, I figured Congressman Gohmert would pull out evidence of the president’s innocence. Clearly, he has none,” said Gilbert.
“It is sad. It is time for him to go,” Gilbert said.
Gilbert Announces For Congress
September 4, 2019
TYLER – Rancher and small businessman Hank Gilbert (D-Tyler) announced Thursday morning that he would challenge incumbent Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Tyler) in the 2020 race for Texas Congressional District 1 in front of a group of supporters and members of the media at the IUE-CWA Local 86782 Union Hall in Tyler. He made further announcements later in the day in Longview and Nacogdoches.
“It is time for this congressional district to have a representative who actually understands the East Texas values of hard work, fair play, and taking care of our fellow man,” Gilbert said.
Gilbert cited economic improvement, a plan to curb student debt, and increasing access to rural healthcare as three major portions of his platform.
“The Trump-Gohmert Tariffs amount to an extra tax of about $1,000 per year on the average U.S. household,” Gilbert said.
Part of these tariffs just took effect Sept. 1 and amounted to a 40 percent tariff on $109 billion worth of annual imports. Another 15 percent tariff will impact $155 billion worth of consumer goods imported from China starting Dec. 15.
“You and I will pay more for the goods we buy every time we go to Walmart or Target thanks to these tariffs. Louie Gohmert supports these tariffs and thinks they are good policy. The reality is that they are not–they are hurting middle class families,” Gilbert said.
Gilbert said that the tariffs are just another example of poor fiscal policy under Gohmert’s watch in Congress.
“The Gohmert approved tax cuts are hurting East Texas families,” he said. “While billionaires get a deduction for their private jets, middle class families in Congressional District 1 may see a few extra dollars in their paycheck every week, but they are getting hammered at tax time and seeing far less of a refund,” he said.
“Our police, teachers, and firefighters got hurt by Gohmert’s tax cut and I’m committed to helping them.”
Gilbert also called for massive student loan reforms, and announced several proposals to reduce or eliminate student debt, including programs that would pay for the entirety of vocational or junior college training for college students, and that would pay for the first two years of a college student’s four-year degree, if they agreed to dedicate one year to government service following graduation at the state, local, or federal level.
Coupled with that, Gilbert said, he proposed no-interest student loans for the final two years of a student’s four-year degree, with repayment deferred for three years following graduation.
“America cannot grow the next generation of innovators if they are overburdened by student loan debt,” Gilbert said. “Young people today are forced to take multiple jobs to make ends meet after graduating just to cover their student loan debt,” he continued.
“We cannot turn out the next Bill Gates, Katherine Johnson, or Jonas Salk if some of the brilliant minds of the next generation shy away from advanced degrees and institutions of higher learning because they are fearful of being overburdened by student debt for much of their adult lives,” Gilbert said.
Gilbert also called for major rural healthcare reforms.
“Rural hospitals have been shutting their doors left and right for years,” Gilbert said. “Louie Gohmert has stood by and watched it happen, without lifting a finger to help rural hospitals in his own district,” he said.
“It is imperative that Congress require states to increase Medicaid reimbursement rates on things like labor and delivery services and provide more pass-through funding and grants to help rural hospitals keep their doors open,” he said.
“Every time a rural hospital cuts services or closes its doors, people are at risk, and our quality of life in this district decreases,” he said. “When I’m in Congress, we will put more money in to rural healthcare to ensure that people in rural communities aren’t sacrificing their health and well-being just because they choose to live where they live,” he said.
Gilbert, a former high school agriculture teacher and longtime rancher and small businessman, lives in Tyler. His two sons, Cody and Peyton, attend pharmacy school at the University of Texas at Tyler.
Gilbert Asks Why Gohmert Will Not Speak Against Occupation of American Cities; Announces Sunday Protests in Tyler, Nacogdoches
July 22, 2020
TYLER-- Hank Gilbert (D-Tyler) on Wednesday challenged his opponent, Congressman Louie Gohmert (R-Tyler) to take a stand against federal forces occupying American cities in the wake of President Trump’s announcement that federal law enforcement officers are on their way to additional American cities to likely cause the same havoc they have in Portland, Oregon.
“The events in Portland--and what is about to happen in Chicago, New York, and other cities--should be deeply concerning to every American,” said Gilbert.
“The practices being used by this paramilitary force is considered kidnapping under federal law,” Gilbert continued.
“Under this president, we are seeing militarized federal agents use weapons of war including sonic weapons and tear gas against Americans in Portland. This is unacceptable in every way,” Gilbert said.
Gilbert noted that, instead of speaking out against the infringement of Americans’ rights in Portland, his opponent has been doing anything but.
“This week, Louie Gohmert demanded the Justice Department investigate whether or not the rights of some multi-millionaires in St. Louis were violated when they were charged after brandishing guns at Black Lives Matter protestors,” Gilbert said.
“Why wasn’t Louie Gohmert demanding civil rights investigations into the deaths of Eric Garner, Michael Brown, Alton Sterling, Philando Castile, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd and other African Americans killed by the police,” Gilbert said. “Instead, while federal forces are occupying Portland and preparing to occupy Chicago and other cities, Louie is out there defending a couple of millionaires.
“As much as I hate to say so, the only way to send a message to this administration, and to people like my opponent, is for us to take to the streets and protest these actions,” Gilbert said.
“The sheer hypocrisy of Louie Gohmert ignoring the fact that our democracy is on the edge of becoming a police state while people’s civil liberties are being violated, and while our constitution is being trampled on by federal law enforcement is stunning,” Gilbert said. “What is happening in America today seemingly goes against everything Louie Gohmert preaches, but he’s not saying a word about the paramilitary occupation of American cities by federal law enforcement,” Gilbert said.
“When Barack Obama was president, Louie and other Republicans yelled and screamed about ‘states rights’ when it came to issues as fundamental as healthcare. Now, we have federal law enforcement essentially occupying American cities, and Louie Gohmert has nothing to say," Gilbert continued.
Gilbert noted he was planning a Protest Portland protest on the square in downtown Tyler on Sunday afternoon at 2 p.m., with a separate protest to follow at 6 p.m. in Nacogdoches.
Additional details on the protest and other groups participating in the event will be released throughout the day on Thursday and Friday.
“I urge groups across the country to join us,” Gilbert continued.
BREAKING: Statement of Hank Gilbert on Gohmert vote against US Post Office
August 22, 2020
The following is the statement of Hank Gilbert (D-Tyler) on Congressman Louie Gohmert’s vote today against legislation providing additional funding to the U.S. Postal Service:
“Louie Gohmert gave the middle finger to every person in our district who depends on the post office for shipment of medications, medical devices, and more today, with his vote on House Resolution 1092.
It is one thing to stand with the President when you believe as he does on a moral issue. It is quite another to support this administration’s assault on a necessary government service that has existed since near the dawn of the republic.
Louie Gohmert’s vote today clearly shows he is out of touch with the people of his district, who use, support, and rely on the U.S. Post Office.
Gohmert’s vote today is the height of a disgusting charade he has perpetuated in Congress for 16 years whereby he tells the district he is working for them, and votes against their interest at every turn.
Not counting his 62 votes to do away with the Affordable Care Act and remove pre-existing condition protections for East Texans, this is up there in the top five of the worst votes Louie has ever cast.”
Armed Louie Gohmert Supporters Assault Opponent's Campaign Manager At Protest While Tyler Police Drive Idly By
July 26, 2020
Campaign Manager Sustains Injuries; Gilbert Demands Gohmert Denounce Violence Perpetuated in his Name, Calls For Texas Rangers' Investigation of Tyler PD Conduct
TYLER, Texas--Armed supporters of Congressman Louie Gohmert (R-Tyler) brutally beat and assaulted Ryan Miller, the campaign manager for Gohmert's opponent, Hank Gilbert (D-Tyler) around 2:30 PM CST Sunday during a peaceful rally organized to protest the unconstitutional occupation of Portland, Oregon on the courthouse square in downtown Tyler.
Miller was attacked by at least four protesters, some of whom were armed, and sustained blows to the head and other parts of his body, as well as a large gash under his eye. The incident occurred as officers from the Tyler Police Department drove around the square idly, waving at the Blue Lives Matter counter-protesters who had come to support Gilbert's opponent.
Gohmert's supporters disrupted the rally by shouting, "Louie! Louie! Louie!" repeatedly, including while Miller was being brutally attacked.
A police report has been filed with Tyler police, who showed up on the square after the violence was well-underway.
"We had more than 100 people RSVP to participate in this protest, and were flooded with calls, texts, and emails in the 20 minutes before it began with folks telling us they would not be getting out of their cars after seeing the mass of armed counter-protesters who had descended upon the square," said Vince Leibowitz, a consultant for Gilbert.
Gilbert called on Gohmert to denounce the violence his supporters engaged in.
"Louie Gohmert needs to immediately denounce the violence that occurred in his name in downtown Tyler today," Gilbert said. "When your armed thugs are shouting your name as they beat the hell out of a 21-year-old political operative, you need to get your people under control," Gilbert said. "Gohmert also needs to get his disgusting rhetoric under control, because, just like Donald Trump, the vitriol that spills out of his mouth leads to violence. This time, against a 21-year-old college kid," Gilbert said.
Gilbert also called on the Texas Rangers to immediately investigate the conduct of the Tyler Police Department in today's matter. "The Tyler police were idly driving around the square in their patrol cars, and waving at the counter-protesters who were heavily armed," Gilbert said.
"They didn't get on the square until the violence was well underway and weren't even near the scene of the actual protest until Ryan had already been beaten up," Gilbert said. "This is after we were told by the city last week there would be a sufficient police presence downtown for our rally," Gilbert continued.
"I immediately call upon Texas Governor Greg Abbott to direct the Texas Rangers to investigate why the Tyler Police Department was not actively working to prevent violence when more than 100 armed thugs descended on the square," Gilbert said. "I also call upon the city of Tyler to immediately undertake an internal investigation of this matter, to determine if proper procedures were followed," Gilbert said. Gilbert said he was also calling on the FBI to investigate the organizers of the counter-protest to determine if they had intended to engage in pre-medidated violence today, noting it seemed their intent was to provoke violence all along.
"We fully intend to make sure that felony charges are brought against the person who stole Ryan's brand new iPhone, which costs enough that theft of that device is a felony in Texas. We also intend to ensure that those who attacked Ryan are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law," Gilbert concluded.
GILBERT IS AVAILABLE FOR INTERVIEWS VIA ZOOM, SKYPE, AND PHONE. CONTACT 972-876-6175 TO SCHEDULE.
Gilbert Questions Why Man Who Choked Protester Has Not Been Arrested
July 28, 2020
Campaign Releases Video Footage, Including Confession of Woman Who Incited Violence by Shoving a Gilbert Supporter
TYLER, Texas--Hank Gilbert (D-Tyler), Democratic nominee for U.S. Congress from Texas’ First Congressional District on Tuesday publicly questioned why the Tyler Police Department had not yet arrested Eric Artimire, a Tyler man seen in now-viral video and still photographs choking an older participant at Gilbert’s Protest Portland rally on Sunday in Tyler.
“The photo of Eric Artimire assaulting Paul Benson has been transmitted by the Associated Press around the world, and appeared online or in print in the newspapers in Houston, Tyler, and Dallas,” said Gilbert. “There is empirical, undeniable evidence of the assault. Why is this man still walking the streets,” Gilbert questioned.
“I understand the police department may need more time to go through the video concerning the assault on my campaign manager, but my lord--the photo of Eric Artimire violently choking a peaceful protester has been seen around the world, and I can’t figure out why the Tyler Police Department hasn’t placed this man in handcuffs yet,” Gilbert said.
Gilbert reiterated his call for Texas Governor Greg Abbott to ask the Texas Rangers to investigate the Tyler Police Department’s handling of the protest itself, and added to that a call for the Rangers to investigate the Tyler PD’s investigation itself.
“Clearly, we need to investigate the investigators here,” Gilbert said. “The Texas Rangers need to come up here, walk through the doors of the Tyler PD headquarters, and ask what in the heck is happening in Tyler, Texas,” Gilbert said.
“A photograph of someone being choked out by a man who has been identified by the Associated Press should be enough evidence to bring this man downtown and book him,” Gilbert said.
Gilbert also called on Smith County District Attorney Jacob Putman to convene a special grand jury to look into the incidents on the square, and the police’s handling of those events.
“DA Putman needs to immediately convene a special grand jury--by Zoom if he has to--and look into this,” Gilbert said. “It is hard to believe, with Neo-Nazi’s and white supremacists so quickly gathered for this counter protest, that there was not some likelihood that violence was premeditated by my opponent’s supporters,” Gilbert said. “Look at the videos--there are people in gang jackets, with iron crosses tattooed on their heads, white pride on their arms, and carrying Confederate flags,” Gilbert said. “It is hard to believe these people weren’t already steeled for violence,” Gilbert said.
“DA Putman also needs to call Miss Caroline Artimire before this grand jury, and determine if she violated Section 42.04 of the Texas Penal Code--which covers inciting a riot. It sure seems to me that her admitted actions, from unplugging the sound system to admitting to being the first person to physically touch another person in a violent way, constitute such conduct, but I’m not a lawyer,” Gilbert said.
“Now, my opponent is a lawyer and former judge, so he should know what constitutes violating this statute. Yet he refuses to denounce the violence that injured my campaign manager, and has given two different stories about how he found out about the rally. In an interview with ABC affiliate KLTV yesterday, Gohmert claimed he knew nothing about my rally or the counter-protest happening until he called the Sheriff of Smith County. Later yesterday, in an interview with the CBS affiliate in Tyler, Louie said he didn’t know about the rally I had scheduled and the counter-protest until he received a text on his way to the airport. Which story is true,” Gilbert asked.
Gilbert also noted his campaign had released today, on its YouTube channel, a variety of videos of the protest Sunday, including video shot by the campaign’s videographer, video stills from local news outlets showing the attack on Campaign Manager Ryan Miller, and Caroline Artimire’s confession statement. “When will Tyler PD act,” Gilbert asked. “The clock is ticking,” he said.
URL TO VIDEOS including four-part video of Caroline Artimire’s confession of throwing first shove and unplugging sound system, and various videos including KETK coverage showing Miller being assaulted, and videos taken by the campaign’s paid videographer showing the counter-protesters encroaching on speakers, etc.
URL OF HANK’S LETTER TO GOV. ABBOTT, GENERAL PAXTON