Army veteran and former Arkansas football star Jake Bequette on Monday announced his candidacy for the U.S. Senate.
Bequette, 32, was a defensive end with the New England Patriots, winning a Super Bowl ring in 2014. Prior to that, he was an all-SEC standout with the Razorbacks, racking up 23.5 sacks during his college career.
After his football career ended, he joined the Army and served in the 101st Airborne Division for three-and-a-half years.
“Today, I am announcing a run for the U.S. Senate in Arkansas,” Bequette said in an interview with The Daily Wire.
“I decided to join the Army because I wanted to be in the fight. I wanted to be where the fight was. And I think it’s clear now that the fight is not on a distant battlefield, the fight is right here. It’s political, and we need leaders who are willing to stand up and speak the truth,” he said.
Bequette, a Republican, will face incumbent GOP Sen. John Boozman in the primary next year. Boozman was first elected to the Senate in 2010 after having been elected to the House in 2001, according to Ballotpedia.
“I see this run as the continuation of the oath that I took to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States,” Bequette said. “Just seeing the violence in our streets, the suppression of our economy, everything that’s happening coming out of Washington that’s permeated into every institution in American life.
“We need bold, dynamic difference makers in Washington who are going to actually stand up and fight for the conservative values that Arkansans’ and millions of Americans truly care about. That’s why I’m running,” he said.
“First and foremost, I’m running because Washington is failing America. Part of the problem is you have the radical socialist leadership of Democrats under President [Joe] Biden, [House Speaker] Nancy Pelosi, [Senate Majority Leader] Chuck Schumer, and ‘The Squad,'” Bequette said, referring to a group of leftist members of Congress.
“But also part of the problem is career politicians in the Republican Party who simply refuse to stand up and fight for what’s right. If you’re going to be a leader in the Republican Party, if you’re going to lead the conservative movement these days, you have to be someone who’s willing to stand up, lead from the front, move the needle, and be a difference maker on key issues.”
He said change is essential now.
“America is at a crossroads. The Democrats in Washington have never been more radical than they are today. They want to institute insane policies like defund the police, like ‘the Green New Deal,’” Bequette said. “They want to push ideologies that are anti-American like critical race theory. We have a legitimate crisis at our southern border that’s been unaddressed by generations of career politicians in both parties.”
In a video posted to Twitter on Monday, he further explained why he is running for a Senate seat, using football as an analogy.
“When you take the field between the lines here, there’s no politics. There’s no politically correct way to sack a quarterback,” Bequette said.
“It’s just cold, hard truth for everyone to see. Either your side wins, or the other one does,” he said.
Bequette said politics needs to change.
“What’s happening in Washington these days is a disgrace. The Democrats have been taken over by radical socialists,” he said, as the video showed images of Pelosi and Schumer. “And too many Republicans just go along to get along.”
Bequette said he shares the frustrations and beliefs of most Americans.
“Now more than ever, we have to stand up and fight for what we believe in,” he said. “I’m a God-fearing Christian conservative who is 100 percent pro-life and pro-police, and I will never apologize for being against illegal immigration.
“Like you, I’m sick and tired of the media lying, China getting away with murder, and politicians who only stand up for [former] President [Donald] Trump when they stand to benefit.”
Bequette closed his video by saying, “It’s time to win our country back.”
As an Army veteran, former NFL player, and Arkansas Razorback, I have lived my life with service and conservative values at the forefront.
— Jake Bequette (@JakeBequette91) July 12, 2021
The former Patriot recently sounded off about the antics of Olympics-bound Gwen Berry, a hammer thrower who refused to respect the national anthem at the Olympic trials.
“I was very blessed to be able to play football for the University of Arkansas and for the New England patriots. And standing there on the sideline before a game watching that flag wave and the national anthem play always filled me with pride,” he said on Fox News. “And wearing that flag on my shoulder serving in Iraq with the 101st Airborne Division was the greatest honor of my life.”
“It makes me very upset to see some athletes and even President Biden blatantly disrespecting our flag and the great country that flag stands for. So if Gwen Berry wants to, you know, if she hates this country so much, then she should quit the U.S. Olympic team and go compete somewhere else.”
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.