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Oldest Member of Congress, Ralph Hall of Rockwall, Faces Tough Runoff

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DALLAS (CBS 11 NEWS) - At 91, Congressman Ralph Hall of Rockwall still keeps a busy schedule.

CBS 11 was only granted a few minutes to speak with him between Memorial Day events.

After 17 terms in office, and running for his 18th, the Republican finds himself fighting for his political career.

(credit: CBS 11 News)

(credit: CBS 11 News)

When asked how confident he is that he’ll win Tuesday, Mr. Hall said, “The latest poll shows I was up eight points, that was two days ago. I just hope it holds up, but you can’t tell who gets there. I could easily get beat or I could easily win.”

Hall is the oldest ever member to serve in the U.S. House of Representatives.

(credit: CBS 11 News)

(credit: CBS 11 News)

John Ratcliffe, a former Mayor of Heath and a former U.S. Attorney in Texas, hopes to unseat Congressman Hall.  “We’re very optimistic. The word on the ground is good. The feedback we’re getting from the folks at the early voting polls is very optimistic. Our phone banking is very positive. Our internal polling looks really good.”

The two are in a runoff, after the March election when Ratcliffe won nearly 29 percent of the vote.

Hall won 45 percent of the vote, five points shy of what he needed to become nominee.

When asked why he believed he is in a runoff, Congressman Hall said, “Well, I spent January and February in Congress while he was spending money. I was doing my duty.”

Ratcliffe says, “Results on March 4th were an overwhelming majority of voters, 55 percent voted against Congressman Hall. It isn’t because they don’t like him, but the majority think he’s been there for too long.”

Ratcliffe says his top priorities are to pass a Constitutional Amendment to balance the federal budget, repealing and replacing the President’s healthcare law, and term limits.

Ratcliffe says, “I’ve already term-limited myself. I’ve said I’m going to serve no more than four two years terms if I go to Washington.”

When asked what he hopes to accomplish next term, Hall said,  “I have a lot to accomplish.  I have to continue to take care of that sorry President.”

Congressman Hall didn’t give specifics, then apologized that he had to go to his next event.

Hall, a World War II veteran, says this will be the last time he runs for office.

Follow Jack on Twitter:  @cbs11jack

(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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