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JANUARY 5, 2022

In the Navy, I worked to defend our country.

From Officer Candidate School to my years spent onboard
the USS RONALD REAGAN (CVN-76), I was prepared to fight and die to protect America from any threat we encountered.

I swore to God that I would support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.

If you had asked me on January 5, last year what I’d be doing a year later, running for Congress would not have been my answer.

January 6 changed that. I witnessed firsthand, a mob of domestic terrorists launch the first siege of our Capitol since the War of 1812.

Never did I think a defeated President peddling his “Big Lie,” would sic a mob of lawless rioters on the Vice President and Congress.

As a Naval Intelligence officer, I was stationed in Washington D.C. on January 6.

I watched the lynch mob descend on the Capitol. I saw them battling with police screaming “Hang Mike Pence!”

I saw them breach the police lines, battering officers valiantly trying to hold their lines.

Some bore the symbols of hatred this country defeated 77 and 157 years ago.

I witnessed the first violence ever perpetrated at the
certification of a Presidential election in our more than 245-year history.

When the smoke cleared and the mob was evicted from the Capitol I was shocked at the subsequent political cowardice. Rather than
rally to the defense of the Constitution and condemn evil, I saw a political capitulation.

More than 140 Republicans voted to perpetuate the Big Lie and try to derail the democratic election of the new president.

At that moment I knew our Democracy was in peril and I needed to do something to defend it.

My duty to my country was to return home after transitioning to the U.S. Navy Reserve and run for Congress.

The current Representative, who supported the attack and peddles conspiracy theories cannot be trusted to represent Kansas in Congress.

Our Constitution is in jeopardy and needs patriots to defend the rule of law. Law and order must be maintained. We cannot allow mobs to overrun our democracy and threaten the rule of law.

Far too many veterans have made the ultimate sacrifice to ensure we can settle our political disputes with elections, not with the threat of a lawless mob. We’ve sacrificed far too much to let the mob win.

As your Representative, I will do everything to ensure our experiment in democracy continues, and, as President Reagan said, “America remains the bright shining city on the hill,” a beacon of hope for all the world.

Patrick Schmidt