Communications

Weekly Chairman’s Report (Nov 27 – Dec 4)

December 4, 2017

Dear Texas Republicans,

This week was a flurry of activity, beginning with Governor Abbott visiting our offices and concluding with our quarterly State Republican Executive Committee meeting on Saturday. A full report on Saturday’s SREC meeting is included below.

Governor Greg Abbott used Republican Party of Texas headquarters for a press conference Monday afternoon. Governor Abbott announced Jimmy Blacklock will be nominated to replace Justice Don Willett on the Texas Supreme Court. Justice Willett is nominated to become a member of the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals and is expected to be confirmed by the Senate in the coming weeks.

On Friday, Governor Abbott hosted RPT staff, SREC, and other RPT leaders at the Governor’s Mansion for the annual Christmas party.

The field team was back for its first full week following the Thanksgiving holiday, and didn’t miss a beat getting back to business. Our Regional Field Directors conducted 41 meetings with new and already active volunteers to expand their team heading into 2018; gathered 200 petition signatures; held 2 house meetings; and knocked on 900 doors. This hard work now will set us up for success when we drastically increase goals in the new year.

At this past weekend’s quarterly meeting, the State Republican Executive Committee accomplished several critical items of business. Perhaps the most anticipated agenda item was the wording for ballot propositions that will be on your Republican Primary ballot this coming March. State law gives the SREC sole authority to develop these, and we selected a record-breaking 11 items to include this time – view them here. These are non-binding ballot initiatives that gain valuable data on the position of primary voters on high profile issues.

The SREC also considered a resolution to censure State Representative Byron Cook under Rule 44 in the RPT Rules. It received 35 votes in favor and 16 against, falling short of the 43 votes required to meet the “two-thirds of the full SREC membership” threshold and trigger the application of the penalties in the Rule.

The body formally accepted the state convention delegate strength (view the number of delegate slots assigned to your county or Senate District) and set the State Convention start time for 10am on Thursday, June 14, 2018. Mark your calendars today, and plan to be at your precinct convention in March so you can have a shot at one of those state convention delegate slots!

Our treasurer Larry Hicks reported on our financial standing, after which the SREC approved the 2018 Budget that the Officials Committee has been developing. In November we received more large dollar donations than any other month since July of 2016 and we had the highest total donations received since October of 2014. This is an encouraging trend that I look forward to continuing.

I was honored to appoint two new attorneys to the position of Assistant General Counsel: Wade Emmert is a former Dallas County Chairman and Ross Fischer works with General Counsel Chris Gober as a part of the Gober Group. We are extremely blessed to have the volunteer support of these highly qualified individuals and I’m thankful for their willingness to serve.

Very exciting to me was our ability for the first time in SREC history to use electronic voting.  Since a roll call vote is required for each resolution — and roll call votes are often needed or requested other times as well — this saved us an enormous amount of time and allowed us to spend our precious minutes completing actual business.

A final highlight was the SREC’s approval of a standing rule that “Staff and guests may photograph, record, and/or stream the proceedings of any meeting of the SREC or its committees or subcommittees not held in executive session.” As someone who began using facebook live to stream political meetings starting the week it was released, and having counted on many guest livestreams in order to follow important proceedings, I could not be happier with this decision. I highly encourage you to make good use of it!

I’d like to personally thank any of you who attended the meeting as a guest, watched the livestream, or spoke with your SREC members about your preferences. This type of communication with your representatives on the SREC helps ensure that you are well-informed on their decisions as they fulfill their role of running the party between conventions. Remember, this SREC term includes two more meetings (Jan. 26-27, 2018 and April 6-7, 2018), so there is still ample opportunity to get to know your current SREC representation. Find their contact information here.

I’d also like to thank our generous meeting sponsors, Rick Green of Patriot Academy (pictured), Chad Wilbanks, Prestige Oysters, and Calpine Energy. I encourage you to join me in expressing appreciation to them and their companies for their support.

If you missed the meeting, you can review it on our archived livestream on YouTube.

In Case You Missed It . . .

News Articles:

Press releases:

December 11: Last day for candidate filing (see filing info)

January 26/27: Q1 2018 SREC meeting

Follow us on Facebook to keep updated on everything we’re working on!

Sincerely,

James Dickey

Weekly Chairman’s Report (Nov 20 – Nov 27)

Dear Texas Republican,

As I reflect on this season of giving thanks, there is much to be grateful for, but I am especially grateful to serve as your Chairman of the Republican Party of Texas.

As Chairman, I have had the opportunity to meet thousands of hard-working Republicans who dedicate their time and passion to the Republican Party of Texas, and it has been the highlight of serving thus far. County Chairs, Precinct Chairs, State Republican Executive Committee members, and the faithful grassroots are selflessly working to improve the Party and fight for the the ideals we all believe in: expansion of opportunity and protection of freedom. I am thankful to be able to serve alongside our incredible volunteers and staff as we work toward such worthwhile goals.

Immediately after the tragedy of Hurricane Harvey, I had the opportunity to see the generous heart of so many RPT officials, staff, affiliates, and volunteers. Our community rallied to the aid of cities like Rockport, Houston, Rose City, and the surrounding areas that were devastated by Hurricane Harvey. Recovery continues––and will continue for years to come––and I am thankful to know that together we can and will rebuild.

With many of Texas’ Republican economic policies making this state a great friend to businesses in our nation, I have had the opportunity to grow my small business, employ great people, provide for my family, and dedicate a great portion of my time to the Party. I am thankful to see Texas prospering amidst unique challenges and spurring economic growth that causes tens of thousands to move to this state every year.

Here at the Republican Party of Texas, we have an extra reason to be thankful this season. A generous donor has agreed to match every donation dollar-for-dollar until the end of this month. I ask that you take advantage of this opportunity to double your donation as these final weeks of fundraising are crucial. We must be ready to take on the 2018 election cycle.

The Republican Party of Texas would not be as strong as it is without you. We need your support, and we deeply appreciate it. Thank you for allowing me the greatest opportunity– to serve as your Chairman. May God bless you and your family.  

With my sincere gratitude,


James Dickey
Chairman

Weekly Chairman’s Report (Nov 13-Nov 19)

November 19, 2017

Dear Texas Republicans,

Last Friday I sent notice for our 4th quarterly SREC meeting, and I hope that you will join us December 1-2 — either online via our livestream or in person at the Wyndham Garden Austin!

If you were a delegate to convention, you helped elect 2 members from your district to the SREC — the State Republican Executive Committee — to run the Republican Party of Texas. The SREC holds quarterly meetings to conduct party business. You are invited to observe as a guest or watch the livestream.

This is a chance for you to connect with the people you elected, see what decisions are being made, and give input. On Friday you can watch committee meetings, and on Saturday listen to the reports, votes, new business, and more. Join the facebook event page to view the agenda and receive updates.

I was in Ft. Worth Sunday night for a dinner put on by local grassroots volunteers. The event was attended by over 60 people and gave me the opportunity to share my vision for the Republican party and give a status update on candidate recruitment and filing. We’ve had over 150 candidates file for a place on the Republican ballot at headquarters, not to mention the hundreds more who have filed at the county party level. I am excited for our party and the impact we will make in the 2018 elections!

Saturday morning, I spoke with Republican Women of Arlington. I gave them an update on what our political team is doing out in the field and our status with candidates who filed to run for office thus far. On Wednesday, I gathered with small group of people who were kind enough to host a fundraiser for the RPT.  I am grateful to those who attended and like what the Party is doing so much that they responded with extremely generous support.

I joined our Deputy Political Director Stephen Wong and Dallas Regional Field Director Joel James at a Dallas County Precinct Chair training on Saturday as we continue our focus on statewide recruitment and training. In Dallas, the RPT trained precinct chairs and prospective precinct chairs with the local party and Texans for Greg Abbott field staff. Over 40 activists learned about the Neighborhood Team model and the tools available to all activists and precinct chairs to reach their neighbors, develop volunteers, understand data and get out the vote.

Stephen Wong lead a breakout session on the Republican Leadership Initiative –– a national program teaching engaged activists campaign strategies, data analysis, and grassroots volunteer engagement to help win local races. More information about this program can be found here.

We continue to invest in reaching young people including high schoolers, college students, and young professionals. Our team is working on a multipronged approach to reaching young Texans including growing our field internship program, partnering with College Republicans and other like-minded organizations, and doing targeted outreach on university campuses. To that end, we collect and maintain a resume bank for internships and paid opportunities on the RPT website https://www.texasgop.org/careers/  Jesse Grady, Corpus Christi Regional Field Director, set up a table at the Saxet Gun Show in Robstown, TX on Saturday and Sunday. Jesse met hundreds of volunteers, gaining 165 petition signatures for tax reform. Jesse engaged supporters, helping them to get more involved in the local party.

The first week of candidate filing at the RPT has been a very busy week.  We have received well over 100 filings this week alone.  If you would like to see a list of all the candidates who have filed with us, please visit: https://www.texasgop.org/2018-primary-candidate-filings/

Candidates wishing to run in the Republican Primary must file for a place on the ballot not later than 6p.m. on Monday December 11th.  Candidates wishing to run for an office which covers more than one county must file with the Republican Party of Texas.  Candidates wishing to file for an office which is fully contained within one county (including county chairs and precinct chairs) must file with their county Republican Party.  A list of the current Republican County Chairs may be found at: https://www.texasgop.org/county_chairs/

For more information on running for office, please visit: https://www.texasgop.org/candidate/

News Articles:

Press releases:

Nov. 21: Officials Committee Meeting call to discuss 2018 budget

Dec. 1: SREC committee meetings, 10am-5:20pm, Wyndham Garden Austin, 3401 S IH 35 Frontage Rd, Austin —  click on picture to view the schedule!

Dec. 1: TYRF 1st Annual Christmas Party

Dec. 2: 4th Quarterly SREC meeting — General Session, 9am (expected to last most of the day) — Wyndham Garden Austin, 3401 S IH 35 Frontage Rd, Austin

Don’t forget to join the facebook event page for our SREC meeting! I hope to see you there!

Sincerely,

James Dickey

Weekly Chairman’s Report (Nov 7 – Nov 13)

November 13, 2017

Dear Texas Republicans,

Filing season has begun! Saturday was the beginning of the month-long window during which candidates may file for a place on the Republican Primary ballot. RPT headquarters saw a steady stream of officeholders and candidates throughout the day, as did counties across the state of Texas.

I am eager to see as many Republicans as possible file for public office, and I am excited that the Republican Party of Texas is prepared to offer all of our candidates equal access to our first-class resources free of charge. Running for office is never a decision to be taken lightly. I am grateful for those who have considered the personal and financial cost and are willing to make the necessary sacrifices in order to serve.

I was honored to address the Austin Republican Club on Tuesday. I spoke to them of the importance of being involved in the process — whether filing as a candidate for office, serving as a delegate to the Republican conventions, or volunteering their time in other ways. While there, I saw Jan Duncan and Fernando Trevino (SREC members from SD 14), Third Court of Appeals Justice David Puryear, and multiple candidates for the open Third Court of Appeals seat.

Vice President Mike Pence and his wife Karen visited Sutherland Springs on Wednesday for a prayer vigil remembering the victims of this tragic mass shooting. I offered him my heartfelt thanks for taking the time to visit our state while we grieve with the Sutherland Springs community.

It was my privilege to join Governor Abbott in honoring veterans on Saturday. Since the founding of our country, our military and their families have sacrificed much, being willing to lay down their lives for the hope of fighting for freedom for all Americans. Veterans’ Day is a yearly reminder of the honor we always want to show to those who have served.

I was also fortunate on Saturday to join the Republican Women of Yoakum Area to participate in recognizing the milestone of their 50th Anniversary. It was a pleasure to present them with a commemorative plaque and to congratulate them on their club’s success.

Our regional field directors throughout Texas focused on personal visits last week in order to follow up with the many interested individuals they met while blockwalking. It is encouraging to see them expanding their reach by training and mentoring these active and engaged volunteers. The volunteer teams that our field staff are building will block walk, register new voters, and engage with current voters throughout the next year in order to secure Republican wins. The Republican Leadership Initiative trainings continue to remain a focus as we build to capacity for 2018.

Data Director Spencer Davis has been working directly with Republican candidates and is able to offer data access and personalized insight for their ground game. Blockwalking continues to be a critical tool in any campaign, and Spencer works hard to ensure that all of our candidates have access to the necessary data for this. Each candidate who files receives a packet that includes a data center application to be sure all candidates are aware that the GOP Data Center and the Advantage blockwalk app are free services provided to them by the RNC and RPT.

Our office staff has done an incredible job of preparing for filing season, and I could not have been more pleased with how smoothly our first day of filing ran. I’d like to give Organization Director Brandon Moore a special thank you for all the hours he dedicated to making it a success, along with Assistant Primary Administrator Joanna Kitchen, volunteer and former Tarrant County Chair Jennifer Hall, and the rest of our staff who each participated and filled their roles with excellence.

During the rest of the month, our office will be open M-F, 9am-5pm, with only a few exceptions. See detailed filing information at TexasGOP.org/candidate.

Pictured are some of those who worked at headquarters on Filing Day. See more pictures from the day here.

Our County Chairs across the state also deserve praise for the extraordinary amount of work they are doing during this month of filing. To all of you: thank you for making it possible for voters to elect Republicans.

Speaking of County Chairs – I appointed several highly-recommended individuals to fill vacant county chair spots this past week. Our new county chairs are Joni Clonts (Houston County), Alec Wallace (Crosby County), and Tammy Smith (Upton County).

The Officials Committee of the SREC met by telephone last Friday to begin our budget discussions for 2018. We focused on the core operating expenses. I’m grateful for the expertise we have on the Officials Committee, with small business owners, consultants, accountants, and others with helpful backgrounds. These capable individuals carry out their responsibilities with the effort and seriousness required.

News Articles:

Press releases:

Nov. 16: Officials Committee Meeting call to discuss 2018 budget

Nov. 18: Chairman Dickey at Republican Women of Arlington

Nov. 20: Chairman Dickey at New Braunfels Republican Women

Nov. 21: Officials Committee Meeting call to discuss 2018 budget

Dec. 1-2: 4th Quarterly SREC meeting — join the facebook event page here!

It’s not too late to decide to run for office! Filing period is open until December 11 at 6pm. For more information on candidacy and filing requirements, see our Candidate page: www.TexasGOP.org/Candidate

Sincerely,


James Dickey

Weekly Chairman’s Report (Nov 6-Nov 13)

November 13, 2017

Dear Texas Republicans,

Filing season has begun! Saturday was the beginning of the month-long window during which candidates may file for a place on the Republican Primary ballot. RPT headquarters saw a steady stream of officeholders and candidates throughout the day, as did counties across the state of Texas.

I am eager to see as many Republicans as possible file for public office, and I am excited that the Republican Party of Texas is prepared to offer all of our candidates equal access to our first-class resources free of charge. Running for office is never a decision to be taken lightly. I am grateful for those who have considered the personal and financial cost and are willing to make the necessary sacrifices in order to serve.

I was honored to address the Austin Republican Club on Tuesday. I spoke to them of the importance of being involved in theprocess — whether filing as a candidate for office, serving as a delegate to the Republican conventions, or volunteering their time in other ways. While there, I saw Jan Duncan and Fernando Trevino (SREC members from SD 14), Third Court of Appeals Justice David Puryear, and multiple candidates for the open Third Court of Appeals seat.

Vice President Mike Pence and his wife Karen visited Sutherland Springs on Wednesday for a prayer vigil remembering the victims of this tragic mass shooting. I offered him my heartfelt thanks for taking the time to visit our state while we grieve with the Sutherland Springs community.

It was my privilege to join Governor Abbott in honoring veterans on Saturday. Since the founding of our country, our military and their families have sacrificed much, being willing to lay down their lives for the hope of fighting for freedom for all Americans. Veterans’ Day is a yearly reminder of the honor we always want to show to those who have served.

I was also fortunate on Saturday to join the Republican Women of Yoakum Area to participate in recognizing the milestone of their 50th Anniversary. It was a pleasure to present them with a commemorative plaque and to congratulate them on their club’s success.

Our regional field directors throughout Texas focused on personal visits last week in order to follow up with the many interested individuals they met while blockwalking. It is encouraging to see them expanding their reach by training and mentoring these active and engaged volunteers. The volunteer teams that our field staff are building will block walk, register new voters, and engage with current voters throughout the next year in order to secure Republican wins. The Republican Leadership Initiative trainings continue to remain a focus as we build to capacity for 2018.

Data Director Spencer Davis has been working directly with Republican candidates and is able to offer data access and personalized insight for their ground game. Blockwalking continues to be a critical tool in any campaign, and Spencer works hard to ensure that all of our candidates have access to the necessary data for this. Each candidate who files receives a packet that includes a data center application to be sure all candidates are aware that the GOP Data Center and the Advantage blockwalk app are free services provided to them by the RNC and RPT.

Our office staff has done an incredible job of preparing for filing season, and I could not have been more pleased with how smoothly our first day of filing ran. I’d like to give Organization Director Brandon Moore a special thank you for all the hours he dedicated to making it a success, along with Assistant Primary Administrator Joanna Kitchen, volunteer and former Tarrant County Chair Jennifer Hall, and the rest of our staff who each participated and filled their roles with excellence.

During the rest of the month, our office will be open M-F, 9am-5pm, with only a few exceptions. See detailed filing information at TexasGOP.org/candidate.

Pictured are some of those who worked at headquarters on Filing Day. See more pictures from the day here.

Our County Chairs across the state also deserve praise for the extraordinary amount of work they are doing during this month of filing. To all of you: thank you for making it possible for voters to elect Republicans.

Speaking of County Chairs – I appointed several highly-recommended individuals to fill vacant county chair spots this past week. Our new county chairs are Joni Clonts (Houston County), Alec Wallace (Crosby County), and Tammy Smith (Upton County).

The Officials Committee of the SREC met by telephone last Friday to begin our budget discussions for 2018. We focused on the core operating expenses. I’m grateful for the expertise we have on the Officials Committee, with small business owners, consultants, accountants, and others with helpful backgrounds. These capable individuals carry out their responsibilities with the effort and seriousness required.

News Articles:

Press releases:

Nov. 16: Officials Committee Meeting call to discuss 2018 budget

Nov. 18: Chairman Dickey at Republican Women of Arlington

Nov. 20: Chairman Dickey at New Braunfels Republican Women

Nov. 21: Officials Committee Meeting call to discuss 2018 budget

Dec. 1-2: 4th Quarterly SREC meeting — join the facebook event page here!

It’s not too late to decide to run for office! Filing period is open until December 11 at 6pm. For more information on candidacy and filing requirements, see our Candidate page: www.TexasGOP.org/Candidate

Sincerely,

James Dickey

Weekly Chairman’s Report (Oct 30-Nov 6)

November 6, 2017

Dear Texas Republicans,

Our hearts are broken for the families whose loved ones were so tragically and ruthlessly murdered yesterday while they were in the middle of peaceful worship in the heart of one of Texas’ many wonderful small towns. The RPT has many friends and supporters in Sutherland Springs and Wilson county Chair Ruby Manen has already confirmed that some of those dear friends are facing devastating losses as a result of this senseless act. We have reached out to see what else we can do and while we wait on that we are deep in prayer for all those impacted. We will take time this evening to do so together as our Chaplain, Corey Tabor, leads us in community prayer. To participate in the prayer session,  register here and then join join the call via phone or computer at 6:30 pm Central.

There is much else that has happened over the last week and much that we must do moving forward. Nothing is more important than the people closest to us, though. Please take each opportunity this week to tell someone you love how much they mean to you.

Two key election-related events take place this week:

First, Election Day is tomorrow, November 7. Tuesday is your last chance to vote on seven propositions for constitutional amendments in addition to various local items such as bonds. See your County elections site for your poll locations.

Second, Candidate Filing opens this Saturday, November 11, and it is the first day for those who wish to run for office to declare candidacy by filing for a place on the March primary ballot. Read all about that below in Party News.


Last week I had the pleasure of meeting and speaking to the Greater San Antonio Council Republican Women. It wasexciting to be with them following such a successful TFRW Convention in Dallas. I discussed our plans for next year’s State Convention in the Alamo City and to share with them how they can be an integral part of the platform process as convention delegates. This year is a significant one for San Antonio Republicans: it is our party’s 150th anniversary and San Antonio’s 300th anniversary. At the event, I was fortunate to visit with Texas Representative Kyle Biederman and SREC member Marian Stanko (SD 26), Atascosa County Chair Marian Knowlton, Bexar County Chair Robert Stovall and Wilson County Chair Ruby Manen, in addition to the many wonderful Bexar county area Republican Women’s Club Presidents and representatives in attendance.

A fruitful trip to Houston on Friday afternoon combined meeting with Party donors and attending the Texas Right to Life banquet. It was a pleasure at that event to see so many of our supporters and to connect with SREC members Melanie Flowers (SD 13) and Gail Stanart (SD 15), Fort Bend County Chair Jacey Jetton, and RPT National Committeeman Robin Armstrong. I was also able to see and spend time with numerous Texas elected officials including Lt. Governor Dan Patrick, Supreme Court Justice John Devine, Senators Don Huffines, Joan Huffman and Bryan Hughes, and Representatives Kyle Biederman, Greg Bonnen, Briscoe Cain, Wayne Faircloth, Cole Hefner, Tom Oliverson, Phil Stephenson and Valoree Swanson.

Saturday morning I joined Harris County Chair Paul Simpson and RPT field staff for the Houston Republican Leadership Initiative training as part of the Republican Party’s National Day of Action. Saturday afternoon I met with Hispanic Engagement Director Bianca Gracia to work on next steps in the evolution of our vision and plan for continued growth in the Hispanic community.

An unexpected final bonus was running into SREC member Jan Duncan (SD 14) in Giddings, TX as we were both returning to the Austin area!

Not only did Houston get in on the Republican Party’s National Day of Action — so did Corpus Christi, San Marcos, and Dallas. Last week, our field team kicked off Republican Leadership Initiative (RLI) training with workshops in all four of these cities. RLI is a project of the RNC to help grassroots volunteers learn to use the latest campaign technology for field organizing, develop strong leadership skills within their communities, and connect with a network of activists in order to build a team of volunteers and organizers. (See more info or to sign up for additional trainings)

At our RLI events last week, over 50 brand new volunteers who have never before been active in blockwalking received training and then hit the streets. These new grassroots activists knocked on a thousand doors Saturday afternoon! I’m proud of our team’s investment and excited about expanding our reach through even more dedicated volunteers.

This achievement is in addition to our field team reaching the milestone of knocking on 10,000 doors of registered voters in Texas this year already with a simple message: let’s keep Texas prosperous and free. And this is just the beginning. We’re still hiring more field staff to keep engaging with new voters and new volunteers and spreading the Republican message to all communities across the state of Texas. It is not too early to be thinking about 2018 and even 2020, and I feel strongly that having such a strong ground game this early will ensure us victorious election cycles with Republican wins up and down the ballot.

CANDIDATE FILING

***Candidate Filing opens November 11th, making this Saturday the first day for those who wish to declare their candidacy to file for a place on the March 6th, 2018 Republican primary ballot.***

  • Candidates whose districts cover more than one county will file at RPT Headquarters in Austin. The office will be open this Saturday, November 11th, from 10am-2pm to receive filings, and weekdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. through Monday, December 11th, with the following exceptions:
    • Wednesday, November 22nd, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. (noon)
    • Thursday and Friday, November 23rd and 24th, closed
    • Monday, December 11th, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
    • Contact Joanna Kitchen, jkitchen@texasgop.org or Brandon Moore, bmoore@texasgop.org, or 512-879-4070 for more info.
  • Candidates whose districts cover all or part of only one county will file with their local county party (see listing of county parties and contact information here). Check with your local office to determine the days and hours they will be open to receive filings, as times may vary.
  • Learn more about running for office on our Candidate page: texasgop.org/candidate.

I will be at the office to personally receive first-day filings between 10am and 1pm this Saturday and look forward to the official kickoff of election season!

CONVENTION UPDATE

On Tuesday RPT Executive Director Kyle Whatley led a visit to the San Antonio Convention Center located right on the famed Riverwalk – the site of the 2018 State Convention. They continued preparing and solidifying logistics for this mammoth event.

UPCOMING SREC MEETINGS

Last week, I announced to the SREC the planned dates for our 2018 quarterly meetings:

  • 1st Quarterly Meeting: January 26-27
  • 2nd Quarterly Meeting: April 6-7
  • 3rd Quarterly Meeting: September (exact dates TBD soon)
  • 4th Quarterly Meeting: December (exact dates TBD soon)

These dates avoid conflicts with election and convention dates and allow the SREC substantial meeting time in order to make convention decisions.

As a reminder, the final SREC meeting of 2017 is December 1-2. We’re under four weeks away and hope to see you there. Join the facebook event page to stay up-to-date on our planned agenda.

All SREC meetings are held in Austin.

News and Articles:

Press releases:

Nov. 6, 6:30pm: Prayer call (register here)

Nov. 6, 8pm: Advancement Committee telephone meeting (guests are welcome and will be invited to speak at the end; register here)

Nov. 7: Election Day

Nov. 7: Chairman Dickey at Republican Club of Austin

Nov. 10: Officials Committee Meeting call to discuss 2018 budget

Nov. 11: Candidate Filing Period Begins – RPT HQ is open 10am-2pm

Nov. 11: Chairman Dickey at Republican Women of Yoakum Area 50th Anniversary Fundraiser

Nov. 16: Officials Committee Meeting call to discuss 2018 budget

Nov. 18: Chairman Dickey at Republican Women of Arlington

So please remember to vote tomorrow, join us in prayer today and on the call tonight, and spend some extra time with those you love. May God bless you and keep you.

Sincerely,

James Dickey

Weekly Chairman’s Report (Oct 23-Oct 30)

October 30, 2017

Dear Texas Republicans,

The Republican Party of Texas is uniquely grassroots-driven. People just like you all across Texas are the ones who set our framework and shape our policy goals. And it’s also people just like you who help put that policy into action in countless ways. One of the ways you can help implement conservative policy is by becoming an officeholder. If you’re interested in running for office but aren’t sure where to start, check out our new page to give you the deadlines, eligibility requirements, forms, and potential costs associated with candidacy. The filing period is November 11th-December 11th; candidates must file to run for office within that timeframe.

Last week included three significant and exciting trips!

Monday evening I spoke at the Republicans United for Texas Fall Fest in Caldwell (Burleson County). While there I saw Rep. Leighton Schubert, County Chair Cecil Duke, and many local elected officials. It was inspiring to learn that Burleson County elected their first Republican officeholder only 15 years ago. Now, due to their hard work, every officeholder in the county is a Republican and the party is thriving. I’d like to give a special “thank you” to the fantastic high school Republicans who served our dinner!


On Tuesday, I traveled to Washington, D.C. for a event to raise funds for our party from DC-based supporters. Senators John Cornyn and Ted Cruz were our special guests, and many members of the Texas Congressional Delegation joined us for the evening. It was a privilege to visit with them, and I am grateful for the time they invested to make the fundraiser a success. As we look to grow the party we are particularly fortunate that the event kicked off a relationship for the RPT with multiple first-time donors. I appreciate RPT Executive Director Kyle Whatley joining me for this important effort to broaden the party’s base of support.

A personal treat for me at the event was the chance to spend time again with former RPT Chairman Steve Munisteri and Mississippi RNC National Committeeman Henry Barbour. We appreciate them taking the time from their busy schedules to attend.


On Wednesday, I joined President Trump and the RNC for a reception in Dallas. The President spoke about his administration’s work to fight for tax cuts, eliminate regulations, and speed up approvals in order to allow the Texas economy to continue to thrive. While in Dallas, I also visited with several RPT donors and began the process of building new relationships with interested potential supporters.

Last week also brought the news of significant changes within the Texas House of Representatives. We will continue to work with Speaker Straus and Lieutenant Governor Patrick on the interim charges throughout the remainder of this term. We will also work with House members who support the process that ensures Texas House leadership is selected by the Republican members. So far every Representative I have spoken with fully supports that goal, and I am glad they are in sync and listening to Texas voters and the RPT Platform on this critical issue.

November 4th is a National Day of Action for Republicans across the country, as declared by RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel, and the Texas field team is doing its part to get in on the action! Currently, their focus is on recruiting and training activists to be helpful to every Republican on the ballot next year. To that end, trainings are scheduled in Corpus Christi, Dallas, Houston, and San Marcos. Field staff have been instrumental in developing Republican partners for trainings, recruiting, and logistics. If you would like to attend or receive more information, please contact RNC State Director Kristy Wilkinson KWilkinson@gop.com

We continue work on voter contact and outreach centered around tax reform, which is now at a critical stage in the legislative process after Texas Congressman Kevin Brady, Chairman of the House Ways & Means Committee, cleared the way for a tax reform bill to be introduced November 1st. To date, over 1500 Texans have signed their names to a tax reform petition, over 450 have met to discuss tax reform with a Regional Field Director, and our staff has completed around 75 house meetings across the state.

Pictured, above: Volunteers and young activists from TAMU Corpus Christi before a tax reform meeting at Nueces County GOP. Photo courtesy of Jesse Grady, Regional Field Director in Coastal Texas.

Our Advancement Committee met by telephone last week and voted to approve an online form so that any Texas Republican who has an idea of how to make our party better can submit that idea for consideration. I strongly believe that collaboration and a wider intake of ideas and advice will lead to better processes for our party, and I’m excited that the Advancement Committee is making it so much easier for us to receive input from Republicans all across Texas. If you’d like to suggest an idea or a better method for us, please do so here.

The Officials Committee of the SREC (State Republican Executive Committee) will meet three times in November to discuss the 2018 budget. These meetings will be open (not in executive session), and I am eager to facilitate a structured conversation so the SREC can be confident and well-informed when they approve a budget at our December SREC meeting.  

News Articles:

Press releases:

Now thru Nov. 3: Early voting and blockwalking – join the facebook event page!

Oct. 30: Leadership call for SREC members and county chairs

Nov. 1: San Antonio — Chairman Dickey at Greater San Antonio Council of Republican Women (to attend contact Cheri Creekmore, rccreekmore@sbcglobal.net)

Nov. 7: Election Day

Nov. 7: Austin — Chairman Dickey speaking at Republican Club of Austin (see more)

Nov. 11: Candidate filing period begins! Learn how you can run for office.

Nov. 11: Yoakum — Chairman Dickey speaking at Republican Women of Yoakum Area 50th Anniversary Celebration (see more)

Be sure to vote on the Constitutional Amendments, bonds, and other items in early voting or on Election Day, Nov. 7 — join the facebook event page!

Sincerely,

James Dickey

Weekly Chairman’s Report (Oct 16-23)

October 23, 2017

Dear Texas Republicans,

A Republican form of government depends on citizens making their voices heard in order to shape policy and process. Starting today, you have the chance make your voice heard at the ballot box during early voting for the November 7th General Election. Seven Constitutional Amendments are on the ballot, and we’ve put together a voting guide so you can see how they line up with the RPT platform. Check your county election website for local polling locations.

Last week, I traveled to Dallas along with several team members for the Texas Federation of Republican Women biennial convention. It is well-known that they are the backbone of the party, and we should all give a Texas-sized “thank you” to the talented and hardworking Republican Women of the Lone Star State! It was a delight to visit with club members and convention delegates from all across Texas who imbue our party with strength and vibrance.

We were glad that two of our RPT Field Team members – Cassie Luevano and Bianca Gracia – attended as convention delegates. RNC State Director and RPT Political Director Kristy Wilkinson attended the Dallas convention as a sign of support for all the work that Republican women do to keep Texas red.

Congratulations to TFRW president-elect Karen Newton and to all the incoming members of the Board of Directors. I celebrate with TFRW on their successful convention and look forward to working with them to #LeadRight for a better Texas.

Here are a few snapshots from the Convention:

In addition to these, I also visited with Jan Duncan (SREC, SD 14) and 10 elected officials who were honored at the iVoterGuide awards banquet: Congressman Louie Gohmert, Attorney General Ken Paxton, Senator Bob Hall, Senator Donna Campbell, and State Representatives Briscoe Cain, Matt Krause, Matt Rinaldi, Matt Shaheen, Tony Tinderholt, and Bill Zedler.

The RPT field team had a series of important and impactful events in Houston and the Rio Grande Valley. Bianca Gracia planned roundtables discussing Hispanic engagement, which included pastors and clergy, community leaders, small business owners, and concerned citizens, including (pictured left) Rick Figueroa and Chris Carmona. Several meetings were held entirely in Spanish.

Other field team members — Jesse Grady, Joel James, and Mark Irey — finalized plans to hold important trainings across the state on university campuses in addition to their regular goals. Stephen Wong was in Dallas to meet with College Republicans where he emphasized that there is no better time to be a Texas College Republican!

The Republican Party of Texas is blessed to benefit from the dedicated volunteer service of incredible people from across this great state. One of these areas of service is RPT Chaplain.

Jeremy Story was appointed Chaplain in June and provided much-needed spiritual leadership for the RPT through the trials of Hurricane Harvey. Jeremy offered to resign once he felt led to run for the Texas House of Representatives. We thank him for the grace, humility, and compassion with which he served.

Corey Tabor, the Founder and Lead Pastor of Full Life Community Church in Pflugerville, TX, has been appointed to succeed Jeremy in this crucial role. He is also the Program Director of Austin LifeGuard, the sexual risk avoidance education program of Austin LifeCare Pregnancy Resource Center, as well as a member of the Board of Texas Alliance for Life. He and his wife April have one daughter.

I am delighted that Corey has agreed to serve and lead as our Chaplain.

Several of our SREC committees meet by telephone in between our quarterly meetings. The Officials Committee did so on Wednesday and approved contracts for a broker to research relocation options for Headquarters and for vendors related to the state convention in June 2018. The Advancement Committee will meet this Friday evening to continue a discussion on gathering ideas from the grassroots and in creating a more efficient convention process and communicating it to the delegates. Guests are welcome to join and offer comment — please register here.

In anticipation of primary candidate filing beginning November 11, we made a webpage outlining all the steps potential candidates need to take to officially run for office.

News Articles:

Press releases:

Interviews:

Posts:

Oct. 23-Nov. 3: Early voting and blockwalking – join the facebook event page!

Oct 23: Caldwell — Chairman Dickey at Fall Festival

Oct 24: Washington, D.C. — Reception with Senator John Cornyn benefiting RPT

Oct. 27: Advancement Committee telephone meeting — guests welcome; register here

Oct. 30: Leadership call for SREC members and county chairs

Nov. 1: San Antonio — Chairman Dickey at Greater San Antonio Council of Republican Women (to attend contact Cheri Creekmore, rccreekmore@sbcglobal.net)

Also, remember our next SREC meeting is Dec. 1-2 — join the facebook event page!

Sincerely,

James Dickey

Not the time to politicize gun deaths

This originally ran in San Antonio Express-News on Monday, October 16, 2017.

A nation’s response to a tragedy is a telling sign of the heart of its people.

Our nation is reeling from recent events. On Oct. 1, innocent concert-goers in Las Vegas became victims of one of the most heinous, senseless acts of violence our nation has ever seen. More recently, violence struck in our own state when a 19-year-old Texas Tech University student fatally shot a police officer.

Texas leadership immediately offered their heartfelt condolences and prayers. Gov. Greg Abbott stated, “Texas mourns and prays for the victims of this tragedy, and the entire Las Vegas community, in this time of unimaginable pain.”

I also reached out to the Nevada Republican Party leadership to see how Texans could offer assistance to their hurting people.

As the victims in Vegas were still being counted, I was disappointed to see Democrats attacking Republicans who believe in the constitutionally protected right to own and bear arms. A CBS executive made the heartless statement that the concert-goers did not deserve sympathy, as they were likely Republicans, and was promptly fired.

Following the shooting at Texas Tech, the Democratic Party of Texas sent out a tweet blaming concealed carry on college campuses, ignoring the fact that the murderer was already ineligible for a concealed carry license, and forcing it to send a correction with an apology.

When tragedies strike, such as what we saw in Las Vegas and Texas Tech University, this is not the time for divisiveness. We should grieve with our fellow man and never become callous to the loss of life by any means. We should desire to comfort the hurting and to serve them.

Tragedies should never be politicized by our leaders. That only increases the pain and hinders the healing.

It is equally important in times like these to not allow heightened emotions to dictate policy when it could have lasting negative effects on our rights. The most basic, God-given right is the right to life, and the right to defend life must be protected.

As Louisiana Rep. Steve Scalise, himself a victim of a mass shooting, said recently, “The problem is not that there are too many guns. It’s that there are people that will go out and break the law, whether it’s a gun or some other weapon or a bomb.”

Scalise continued, “The only thing that gets reported are the tragedies. But it rarely gets reported when somebody actually uses their Second Amendment right with a gun to protect themselves against a criminal.”

What we experienced as a nation these past few weeks was terrible and tragic. At this time, motives for the two senseless acts of violence remain unknown. What is known is that the loss of life is always a tragedy, with real, grieving families affected.

We can and will respond with compassion by reaching out in any way we can to help heal the hurting. We extend our heartfelt condolences to those affected by these horrific acts.

We will also respond with truth by honoring the constitutionally protected right of the people to keep and bear arms, which serves a necessary purpose. Not only is it the right by which all other rights are protected, it also makes us more secure in a world where people would do harm to others.

James Dickey is chairman of the Republican Party of Texas and former chairman of the Travis County Republican Party.

Weekly Chairman’s Report (Oct 9-16)

October 16, 2017

Dear SREC Members & County Chairs,

The Republican Party of Texas is already preparing for victory in 2018, and my activities this past week are a reflection of that preparation. From kicking off the Campaign Management School in order to train new candidates, to meeting with an RNC Field Finance Director for coaching on fundraising techniques, to visiting with several of you regarding our minority outreach strategy, there has not been a dull moment. I’m honored to lead the largest solidly Republican state in the nation and am committed to keeping our great state on track for victorious elections.

SREC:

It was a pleasure to speak with JT Edwards and Tanya Robertson of SD 11 regarding minority engagement. They shared with me some great ideas and I will be following up with on those to be sure our engagement strategy is strong and well-implemented.

I saw Vergel Cruz (SD 15) in Houston when I spoke at the Northwest Houston Pachyderm Club, of which he is president. Many of the club’s members are precinct chairs or are active as grassroots volunteers within their local party structure. I’m pictured below with Vergel and club officers.

I saw Terri DuBose (SD 19) in Austin at the Campaign Management School, and Naomi Narvaiz (SD 21) and Linda Kinney (SD 25) in Hays County Thursday evening — more on that later.

Tomorrow evening, the Officials Committee will meet by telephone to discuss and vote on several convention-related contracts as well as a brokerage contract. The purpose of the brokerage contract is to obtain specific information on the options for relocating RPT headquarters in order for us to be able to make an informed decision about the potential savings and tradeoffs around that.

Donors:

I met with prospective new donors this week in both Houston and Austin. Several specifically commented on the increased efforts to communicate the platform and expressed a desire to support that work.  Others are enthusiastic over our close-working relationship with Governor Abbott’s campaign team.  

I am preparing for two major fundraising events next week. Tuesday, Oct. 24, I’ll be in Washington, D.C. for a reception with Senator John Cornyn benefitting the RPT. On Friday, Oct. 27, Congressmen Pete Sessions and Jeb Hensarling will be honored guests at a luncheon in Dallas also benefitting the Party. I’m grateful that our elected officials are showing their support for the Party by attending these events that are important to our success.

Officeholders:

On Wednesday, the Campaign Management School participants were treated to a special appearance by State Senator Dawn Buckingham. Not only did they get to hear from someone who has successfully done what they all aspire to do — win campaigns — but they also were able to see her excitement for maintaining and gaining Republican seats in the midterm elections through her role as Victory Chair. I’m grateful for her efforts that are allowing us to invest early in Republican election work. The Campaign Management School participants are pictured below with Senator Buckingham.

In Houston, I was able to meet Rep. Jim Murphy and hear about the challenges his district in particular faces as a result of Harvey flood destruction and displacement. I  also met Rep. Phil King, who shared some of his priorities in preparation for the next session.

Most encouraging was the numerous county, district and appeals court judges, city council members, school board members, county commissioners, county judges I have been able to meet in all these travels who are already working hard to earn the support of their voters. It is a privilege to help provide organizational support for officeholders and candidates of the caliber that the Republican Party of Texas and our county parties are able to attract.

Press:

Press hits

KXAN: Requiring E-Verify is one of Trump’s demands in DACA negotiations

Statements

RPT Announces New Regional Field Director in Houston

Staff:

Last week, I shared with you an update on staff work in several of our departments. This week I’d like to highlight a few more.

Jennifer Stoner, Accounting Director, and John Alvey, Accountant work very hard to keep all of our finances in order and to be sure we are complying with all applicable laws. They process expense reports, ensure that our bills are paid, and send reports to our Treasurer, Larry Hicks, for accountability and oversight. They also work with Marissa Vredeveld so that she has the information she needs for fundraising work. Jennifer also bears the responsibility for the Human Resources functions for the RPT. It is a relief to know these critical areas are under the watchful eye of such diligent, experienced and talented people.

Rachel Malone, Operations Director, organized the Campaign Management School last week in which 31 of Texas’ finest campaign staff and consultants volunteered their time to teach new candidates and campaign managers how to run successful campaigns. RPT hosts this 3-day school every other year in Austin and many successful officeholders began their careers by attending CMS. Rachel also oversees scheduling, manages events and appointments, and is coordinating a project to be able to thank legislators for their support of platform items during 85th Regular session. Rachel is pictured, left, with our Vice-Chairman Amy Clark.

RNC:

Again this week, we were reminded of how positive it is to have the RNC’s continued help and support. Lauren Bosler, RNC Regional Field Finance Director, flew to Austin for 2 days to work with our team on best practices for fundraising. Her advice was immensely helpful to Marissa Vredeveld, our Finance Coordinator, whose role is to drive fundraising efforts, as well as to Rachel Malone and Kyle Whatley as they also provide support for fundraising. She also met with me and provided valuable insight on making the most of the time that I spend connecting with those who are interested in financially supporting the party. Lauren will continue to work with us to refine our finance plan and help us be as efficient and effective as possible.

Grassroots:

It’s always a wonderful day when I get to meet with the grassroots of Texas, and last week provided many opportunities!

On Monday morning, I addressed the Campaign Management School participants. As they began their intense 3-day training, I provided the framework of what it means to be a Republican candidate — someone who shares Republican principles, stands for them, and serves their constituents.

On Monday evening, I spoke at the Hispanic Republicans of Texas monthly meeting in Sugar Land and was excited to hear from them firsthand about their dedication to working with RPT and their local county parties to grow Hispanic participation in the Republican Party. They appreciated the things the party has been doing and are excited about our commitment to increase and improve our efforts.

On Tuesday, I spoke to two Pachyderm clubs in Houston — Vergel’s club mentioned above, and the Greater Houston Pachyderm Club. These clubs have made themselves helpful venues for candidates needing the required petition signatures and it was positive to see and meet some of the many strong judicial candidates that Harris County will be fielding in the 2018 elections.

Tuesday evening, I joined the United Republicans of Harris County as their guest speaker. I was pleased to have time with Texas Federation of Republican Women President Theresa Kosmoski, Harris County Chair Paul Simpson andRepresentative Jim Murphy at that meeting, as well as to address the group’s questions about our operations in general and the impact of the Harvey flooding on RPT initiatives in Harris County in particular.

Thursday evening, I gave the main address at the Kyle Buda Republican Group in Hays County. I enjoyed our candid discussion of the issues that are currently on their minds and was happy to talk about party process and how the grassroots can make a difference.

On Saturday, I drove to Fredericksburg for two events. First, the Fredericksburg Tea Party hosted a special meet-and-greet reception in my honor (pictured below). This group has been especially active during this past legislative session, traveling to Austin frequently to testify at committee hearings. They had many questions about my vision for the party and how we are working to advance the platform.

Later that evening, I was the keynote speaker at a reunion of those who were part of a Young Republican group in the 1960’s at UT-Austin (pictured below). When they became involved in the party, there was just one lone Republican in the Texas House. Every other seat in the House, all the State Senate, and all the Congressional delegation, was held by a Democrat. It’s amazing to see how far we’ve come since that time, and I know we’re indebted to the people in this group for their work. Many of them continued in the Republican Party and the group included those who have served as mayor of Dallas, congressman, ambassador to Saudi Arabia, and federal judge.

Also on Saturday, several team members produced a candidate training school in Beeville. This is the final session of 17 regional one-day trainings held all over Texas as a joint project between TRCCA and RPT. Pictured below are Vice-Chairman Amy Clark, who has spoken at many of these regional trainings, Regional Field Director Jesse Grady, South Texas YR President Amanda Adamez, SREC Members Mike Goldman and Naomi Narvaiz (SD 21), and Bee County Chair Patty Johnson.

County Chairs:

It was my pleasure to again spend time with both Fort Bend County Chair Jacey Jetton and Harris County Chair Paul Simpson in my travels to their counties on Monday and Tuesday. Thursday evening, I was also able to have a few moments with Hays County Chair Russell Hayter.

It was great to see two county chairs at the Fredericksburg Tea Party event. I’m pictured below, with Kendall County Chair Scott Kramer and also with Gillespie County Chair Dalton Fromme and his wife, Joy. They discussed with staff and me what the state party is doing that is proving helpful, and how we can continue to assist them in their roles.

**Please note – the RPT Organization Department is having a Special Edition Leadership Webinar this evening at 6:30 p.m.  If you haven’t registered yet, you can register at THIS LINK and you will receive an email with instructions on how to join the webinar. The webinar is designed to help County Chairs understand election-related responsibilities with upcoming deadlines. I hope you can join Brandon Moore and Joanna Kitchen as they discuss Party Switchers, County Chair Petitions, Rejected Applications (Precinct Chairs), Candidate Packets, and GOP Data Center. **

Engagement:

I was able to meet with Bill Calhoun (pictured below) on Monday morning at the Campaign Management School. Bill is the president of Texas Federation for Republican Outreach and is passionate about engaging with African-Americans on our shared values.  Bill has been tireless in engagement efforts for years and I was glad to learn from him about ways RPT can be more effective in this capacity.

Update from the Field:

The Field team had a record-setting week of voter contact and relationship building across the state on tax reform and other issues. In recognition of Hispanic Heritage Month, Bianca Gracia held a variety of roundtables to engage the faith and business communities. Cassie Luevano worked closely with Republican Clubs and county parties to bring the President’s tax reform message to Texans. Jesse Grady was involved with the Campaign Management School in Beeville (Bee County), while Spencer Davis, Kristy Wilkinson, and Stephen Wong led sessions at the RPT’s Austin Campaign Management School. Joel James recruited new interns and volunteers in the greater Dallas area and Mark Irey developed volunteer leads in Houston. Finally, the RPT was invited to participate in the College Republicans’ Fall meeting where over 150 students from around the state participated in trainings. The key message, relevant to us all: there is no better time to be a Texas Republican!

Conclusion:

As always, I encourage you to forward this email to those in your districts, or feel free to share information from it on social media. I’d love for all Republicans in Texas to see the great work that our Republican leadership across the state and our team at RPT HQ are doing in order to prepare for victory!

Sincerely,

James Dickey