An anonymous group of donors is ready to place their bets on a young former Marine, hoping to draft him into the 2020 presidential race to challenge President Trump.

You may have heard of retired Staff Sergeant Johnny “Joey” Jones. The former Marine has become the spokesman for several veteran advocacy organizations, piloted a fellowship at the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee and is a frequent analyst on Fox News.

Jones lost both his legs to an IED while serving in Afghanistan as an EOD technician in the Marine Corps. The incident, which triggered a massive explosion, resulted in the loss of both his legs above the knee and severe damage to his right forearm and both wrists. He underwent more than two dozen surgeries and months of physical therapy. When asked how he was able to overcome so much trauma, Jones said, “I think instead of getting over it, you learn to appreciate the things outside of it.”

He has chosen to turn tragedy into opportunity, by educating civilians on the concerns of veterans in a bipartisan way. Representing over a dozen foundations and charities, Jones has used his own story to provide hope to other wounded Veterans and assist them in the transition to civilian life. Jones’ reputation as a voice for veterans blossomed into the political realm, when he began using his influence to support President Trump’s policies, including his use of the Massive Ordnance Air Blast bomb.

While the “citizen journalists” on Twitter were condemning Trump, Jones set out to explain the reality of the situation. He highlighted the importance of allowing Generals, not the public, to make decisions that will keep troops safe. He received a lot of support from both veterans and Conservative pundits, who shared his sentiments that underscored the mistakes made by the Obama administration’s policies in the War on Terror.

But this situation involves far bigger players: Close to a dozen influential donors with deep pockets and conservative leanings are ready to put their resources behind Jones. At their request, a small group of political operatives have taken the first steps in the strategic legwork needed for a bid: a letter outlining their support for his candidacy, in hopes of coaxing him in. An unnamed source provided me with a copy of the letter, written by a man named Travis Snyder.

We were able to verify the letter’s authenticity, after reaching out to Snyder for comment, “I can confirm that the letter is authentic. I can say with a clear mind that SSgt Jones is capable and an enduring man who represents at his core what the American experiment is meant to be. He is a role model for us all. There is no better of a person to inhabit the White House and the Oval Office.” Jones has received the letter, according to two individuals involved with the project.

Jones has not responded to the offer, and he did not reply to a request for comment. No matter what decision he makes, we hope to continue covering this Marine’s dedication to helping veterans. Whether it be in the House Veterans Affairs’ Committee, or the Oval Office. Republicans are hoping that Trump can be re-elected, but I think a great deal of Libertarians and Conservatives would rally behind an American hero if the choice is between Jones and Trump.

“Determined to make the road to recovery easier for his fellow wounded veterans, Jones founded a peer visit program at Walter Reed, providing opportunities for others recovering to mentor and encourage newly-injured patients,” Jones’ biography reads. “His dedication and relentlessness led to an unprecedented year-long fellowship on Capitol Hill with the House of Representatives Veterans’ Affairs Committee, his work resulted in the creation of an annual fellowship for a wounded Marine.”

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