By postponing his decision to run for Congress until the 2020 election, Fort Bend County Sheriff Troy Nehls ensures he will maintain his position as the county’s top cop until then.
Nehls formed an exploratory committee several months ago and let people know he was considering running in 2018 for Congressman Pete Olson’s seat.
“The polls were very favorable. The issue was having to resign to run,” he said.
He announced earlier this month that he was considering running in 2018 and would make an announcement last Wednesday. But Texas law states he would have to resign his seat the same day he announced.
Also, his twin brother, Constable Trevor Nehls – who may run for sheriff if his brother leaves the seat – would have had to resign his post in order to run for sheriff.
That would leave the identical twins without a job for a year.
“So I will continue doing my exploring, engaging the community and seriously consider running in 2020,” said the sheriff.
His term ends Dec. 31, 2020, and he would have to make the declaration in December of 2019.
Nehls said he did not hear any concerns about his decision.
“Some people said, ‘man I’m sorry you are not running.’ Others said, ‘I’m selfish. We love you as our sheriff and glad you are not running,’” he said.
The impetus for Nehls to consider running was, “the direction our country is taking. We’re not securing our southern borders and they are fighting President Trump and not supporting him. Olson is not taking a position on anything. It was time for a change,” Nehls said.
He dismissed the idea that residents would be confused in the next election if a new sheriff is running with the same face.
“We’re a big county and I’m sure there are some people who don’t realize we are identical twins. But when I was running for sheriff and he (Trevor) was running for Constable, it didn’t confuse anyone. He won his race with a strong majority and I did mine with four in the race,” he said.