Thousands of MAGA-loving young Republicans attended a youth summit put on by Dan Crenshaw this past weekend, with many viewing the Texas GOP congressman as a possible successor to former president Donald Trump as the leader of their party.
"I love Trump — love, love Trump," 20-year-old attendee Zerah Steltzer told the Washington Post. "But I think he's getting too old, and it's time for someone fresh in there."
"Trump is not a God," conservative commentator David Rubin said while mingling with the crowd, which reportedly was made up mostly of people ages 14 to 24. "Politics has to be bigger than one specific person."
"If Crenshaw were to run for president, I'd have a hard time deciding between him and Trump," said 17-year-old Esteven Lopez.
"I really like Crenshaw's mentality, his morals, and I love the eye patch," said Pete Empey, 19.
One teenage boy whispered to his friend that he was "trying not to shake" when he saw Crenshaw in person for the first time.
Crenshaw, a Navy SEAL who lost his right eye in Afghanistan, rappelled onto the stage at the summit wearing camo pants and a tight black shirt, following a mini-movie about him escaping from "antifa kidnappers" and parachuting onto the roof of the hotel.
"The eye patch Crenshaw now wears only enhances the idea that he's a cartoon supersoldier, almost like the 'Rambo Trump' meme come to life," the Post reported. "His conference was not anti-Trump, but unlike the worshipful right-wing youth bonanzas held by Turning Point USA, it was not exactly a Trump rally, either. His name was hardly mentioned."
During a discussion at the summit with former Fox News personality Megyn Kelly, Crenshaw called Russian President Vladimir Putin's fan base "very interesting.""There's, like, mugs with him in sunglasses and helicopters and fire behind him," Crenshaw said. Kelly responded by saying that people like "a strong man" and not "this whole Brooklyn, pumpkin-spice latte-drinking man that they are creating here."
"The merchandise store didn't feature mugs of Crenshaw with sunglasses, but it did feature mugs of him with a Texas-flag eye patch and shirts featuring the congressman decked out in full combat fatigues, clutching a gun and smoking a cigar," the Post reported.