Faith, hard work, and freedom—these are some of the principles that congressional candidate Jamie Berryhill says have guided him through his personal and professional life. And now he wants to apply those principles to the federal government.
The 66-year-old Odessan is one of 10 candidates seeking the Republican nomination to succeed retiring Congressman Mike Conaway in Texas’ 11th Congressional District. The vast district is comprised all or in part of 29 counties that includes Midland and Odessa. The eastern side includes cities such as Granbury, Stephenville, Llano, and more.
Berryhill is the founder and director of Mission Messiah—an organization that provides life skills and leadership programs to single women and mothers who have found themselves in dire situations. In addition, the ministry component of the organization has a well-known television program that is connected with Israel TV and is broadcast in multiple countries.
With a bachelor’s degree in finance and marketing from UT Austin, Berryhill has also engaged in numerous business ventures over the years and provided consultant services to help turn companies around—including businesses in the oil and gas industry.
Married to his wife Renda, Berryhill beamed as he told Texas Scorecard of his 6 children and 18 grandchildren.
This will be the second time Berryhill has run to represent West Texas in the United States House of Representatives, having run the first time a number of years ago. The decision to run again came after one person approached him with the idea—and then several more. This caused him to stop and pray about running again; Berryhill says after he then consulted with several local leaders, he felt led to run.
Some of the top issues listed in Berryhill’s platform start with outlining how he will be an ally to President Donald Trump, and he praised the president’s policies that are bringing about a strong economy.
A strong supporter of the Second Amendment, other issues in his platform include reining in big government (citing over 400 federal agencies that contribute greatly to the national debt) and addressing the opioid epidemic.
“Opioids, drugs, and alcohol are at epidemic proportions, and it is affecting lives at multiple levels. It is ripping at the very fiber of our nation, and there are few families immune to it.”
Berryhill has also signed a pledge in support of term limits: three terms for House members and two terms for senators.
Texas Scorecard asked Berryhill what some of his priorities would be if elected to Congress. He said his first priority would be surrounding himself with good, righteous people, especially in his office.
“I absolutely want to pull my group around me of good people, develop my own staff who are like-minded, and [be sure] that I avoid the swamp in that respect.” He stated.
In addition, Berryhill said he would go to other members of the House Freedom Caucus, which he plans to join if elected, for guidance.
“I also want to get with the Freedom Caucus members and hear their hearts and hear what is on their minds.”
Other issues he touched on included lifting people off of the “bondage” of welfare, passing a balanced budget, reducing taxes, and cutting bureaucratic red tape.
Some of Berryhill’s endorsements include Texas Right to Life, Texas Values Action, the House Freedom Fund, and Odessa business leader Dick Saulsbury.
Berryhill also told Texas Scorecard of his most recent endorsement from Bruce Jacobson, who is the CEO of Life OutReach and James Robison Ministries. The founder of the ministry is James Robison, a televangelist who is reported to be President Trump’s Christian advisor.
In closing, Berryhill said that Republicans need to add to the roughly 40 representatives in the House who are holding the lines and fighting for conservative values. He said that it will be important for the next congressman to fight to keep Congressional District 11 “intact” in redistricting, and not to allow the district to be split up and made vulnerable to Democrat attacks.
Berryhill’s message to voters:
“Our nation is hurting; our nation is torn. There is only one answer for him [God]. “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land,” Berryhill quoted the scripture from memory. “I ask for your vote.”
Early voting for the March 3 Primary Election begins on February 18.
Editor’s note: After publication, the Berryhill campaign requested to correct their statement regarding endorsements. Per the request, this article has been updated to reflect that Bruce Jacobson, who is the CEO of James Robison Ministries, and not James Robison himself, has endorsed the Berryhill campaign.