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Communications – James Dickey

Communications

Chairman West’s Weekly Message for 9.8.20

Photo of Chairman Allen West

“Equality of Opportunity versus Equality of Outcomes”

We are within 60 days of a defining election, and even closer to the start of early voting.

If you listen to the leftist media outlets, they tell us that our country, America, is a land of racism, not opportunity. They are teaching our children that our beloved Republic started in 1619 when slaves first arrived on these shores. They do not want us to believe that America began on July 4th, 1776. These are the same media outlets that would not want you to know that our Republican Party of Texas was founded — in Houston, on July 4th, 1867 — by 150 black men.

My story is that of opportunity. A kid born in 1961 in a blacks-only hospital, Hughes Spalding, in Atlanta. Today, that same fella is a retired Army Lieutenant Colonel, a former member of the US House of Representatives, and now Chairman of the Republican Party of Texas. It is all possible because, here, in America, in Texas, we are endowed by our Creator, the Judeo-Christian God, with unalienable rights: life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

In essence, the greatest equality we possess in America is the equality of opportunity. That means no matter where you are born, no matter where you come from, here in Texas, all across America, you can achieve whatever hopes, dreams, and aspirations your individual will, determination, and drive desire. We are all “dreamers” in America, not just some politically identified demographic.

But, what is the opposite of our equality of opportunity; what is its antithesis? It is the progressive socialist left’s concept — nightmare — of equality of outcomes. Really, when you analyze what “social justice” really means, it is the forcible mandate of equality for all . . . social egalitarianism. That results in a few elites deciding what our outcomes shall be, based solely upon their subjective interpretation, centered on their ideological agenda, of what is just, right, and equal.

We are all blessed as individuals with our respective talents, gifts, intellect, and exceptionalism. In America, Texas, we believe that the individual is sovereign over the institution of government. Progressive socialists take the opposing viewpoint; they see the institution of government, man, sovereign over the individual. Leftists do not embrace the fundamental American ideal of individual rights. They prefer, no demand, collective subjugation.
How does one subjugate individuals? It is simple: fail to truly educate society and its future generations. Instead, indoctrinate it, and control the culture as well as the media narrative.

This is why VP Joe Biden has come forward and stated that he will eliminate charter schools. For the left, any competition to their state-controlled indoctrination centers is a threat. As a matter of fact, one of the planks in Karl Marx’s Communist Manifesto was State control of education. This is why the school board member is the most important elected position in our nation. If you do not believe me, just take a look at what is happening in Texas with Austin, San Antonio (NE). and Carrol Independent School Districts (ISD). We are well aware of the socialist, Marxist indoctrination happening on our Texas college and university campuses. All this breeds the next generation of leftist radicals, whom we are watching riot and enact violence and chaos on our streets.

Equality of opportunity leads to economic empowerment while equality of outcomes leads to economic enslavement. Equality of opportunity creates victors! Equality of outcomes results in victims. So many have come to America, legally, and found the equality of opportunity. Even those, like my predecessors, who were forcibly brought here to these shores, eventually found equality of opportunity, even under the most horrible conditions.

That is why my ideological mentor is Booker T. Washington. He was a slave who became one of the greatest educators and orators in the history of America. His autobiography, Up From Slavery is the testimony of equality of opportunity. His three-point principles of education, entrepreneurship, and self-reliance are the keys to having our pursuit of happiness.

The progressive socialist left believes that they can guarantee happiness by determining your outcomes. It has always proven unsuccessful and we must reject it again this election cycle, and in the future. Sir Winston Churchill aptly defined socialism:

Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.”

Sir Winston Churchill

Equality of opportunity is the Texas way, and, the American way. Equality of outcomes just ends up with equal sharing of misery because no one can guarantee your happiness. But in Texas, you can damn well pursue it on your own merit.

#WeAreTheStorm — Text STORM2020 to 484848 (carrier rates may apply per plan)

Chairman West on Identity Politics

Photo of Chairman Allen West

Joe Biden, the Democrat Party’s apparent presidential nominee, has announced Sen. Kamala Harris as his VP running mate, mainly because she is a Black female.

The soft bigotry of low expectations emanating from the progressive socialist left is nauseating. The white leftist mentality, that Blacks can be manipulated with such antics, is offensive and condescending.

Here is a deleted scene from the documentary Uncle Tom that addresses that issue.

I am a proud Black man. I refuse to be castigated as a victim. I am the storm!

Chairman West’s Monday Message for 8.10.20

Photo of Chairman Allen West

So many people assert that addressing border security is not a positive policy agenda. I say, in Texas, it is a critical issue to stress. It is not just about the lawlessness that emanates from a porous border, the proliferation of gangs or the lack of safety and security for those living along our Texas border with Mexico. It is not just about the flow of drugs that, prior to COVID-19, gave us grave concern over the opioid crisis killing our young people. All those are vital issues, but there is one issue that leaves a very dark black eye upon the Lone Star State.

Human and sex trafficking.

Texas is the number one state in these United States of America for human and sex trafficking. The two top cities are Houston and Dallas. Yet we have one political party, the progressive socialist left, who prefer open borders and no checks or prosecution for those crossing our border illegally.

The left continues to promulgate the narrative about children being in cages, a somewhat false narrative. Yet, they say nothing about the issue of human and sex trafficking.

Better border security protocols are necessary to end this plight. And we need a strong Republican Texas State House to legislate the end of human and sex trafficking in our beloved Texas.

LTC Allen West (Ret.)
Chairman, Republican Party of Texas

#WeAreTheStorm

For additional updates, text STORM2020 to 484848

(carrier text rates may apply per your plan)

State Convention Update

July 9, 2020

Convention Delegates and Alternates,

Thank you to the hundreds of you that joined us Tuesday night for a Convention Town Hall Update and the hundreds of you that joined us last night for the New Delegate Training Call. 

Last night, on our New Delegate Training, we informed those on the call that the Republican Party of Texas had received the letter from the Houston First Corporation late yesterday afternoon with notice to cancel our Convention. 

This morning, the Republican Party of Texas filed suit against the Houston First Corporation, City of Houston, and Mayor Sylvester Turner requesting an injunction and a temporary restraining order on their actions and move forward with hosting our Convention on Monday. The hearing was held this afternoon and not surprisingly, our request was denied in the liberal Harris County District Court. We will be immediately appealing to the Texas Supreme Court.

Make no mistake, the cancellation of our contract is a political play from Mayor Turner. He could have cancelled at any time. We have been working with his team for months now on logistics and accommodating pandemic guidelines and recommendations. He chose the timing, and we are fighting back against this Democrat shutdown of Texas conservatives. Turner is holding Texas Republicans to a different standard, and we are holding him accountable. 

Just last Thursday the State Republican Executive Committee (SREC) voted overwhelmingly to hold an in-person convention in Houston at the George R. Brown Convention Center – and the Republican Party of Texas is fighting tooth-and-nail against a Democrat shutdown. Should the convention center become unavailable, the SREC voted on Sunday night to move forward with a contingency plan taking the convention activities online. Any other planning that may be occurring is not official Convention activities. Convention activities for the Republican Party of Texas are duly voted upon by only the Republican Party of Texas State Republican Executive Committee (SREC).  

If we have to go online, safe, local gatherings absolutely may be organized so that while Convention business and electronic voting is being conducted with online systems, we can enjoy being with fellow delegates.

I have called an SREC meeting for Saturday at 5:30 p.m. CT to finalize arrangements based upon the status of the court case. We will send an email immediately following the SREC meeting with the outcome so that you can update your travel arrangements as necessary.

HOTELS

Should we get to a situation where you need to cancel hotel rooms, the Convention hotels have a 24 – 48 hour cancellation notice. If you booked outside the RPT room blocks, you will need to check with that hotel’s cancellation policy. 

If you are booked at the Four Seasons and need to cancel on Saturday, please email Katie Hrkman at kshrkman@michaelbest.com

CONVENTION SCHEDULE

As announced on our Convention Town Hall call this week, the convention schedule has been shortened to accommodate these unusual circumstances. We have removed some of our beloved pageantry – speeches from elected officials, fun interludes, etc. – to keep to the critical business of our convention this year of which the penultimate moment will be electing our electors to cast Texas’ 38 electoral votes for President Donald J. Trump!

If we must move to our online contingency plan, the schedule will remain intact. 

Please click here for the revised convention schedule.

ONLINE PLATFORMS

Today we took the next steps in executing agreements to use the Zoom platform to hold our caucus meetings and general sessions and to use Meeting Pulse for electronic voting for our elections, including those for National Delegates and Alternates, Presidential Electors, RPT Chair, RPT Vice Chair, RNC National Committeeman, and RNC National Committeewoman. We are contracting with a third party to oversee and administer the elections. 

If we are forced to implement our online contingency plans, you will receive much more information about the Zoom platform and training about how to vote with the Meeting Pulse electronic system. 

THANK YOU

Serving as a Delegate or Alternate Delegate to the Republican Party of Texas is a significant responsibility. We appreciate your commitment and sacrifice, and we are committed to ensuring the best possible convention in spite of these unprecedented challenges.

We will keep you updated as things progress. 

Follow-Up Information from Last Night’s Town Hall Call

My Fellow Texas Republicans,

We are facing unprecedented challenges in our country, our state, and our communities as we respond to the Coronavirus pandemic. 

Last night, after connecting with our SREC Members, Republican County Chairs, and Senate District Convention Chairs yesterday afternoon for a leadership briefing, I held a statewide conference call to update Texas Republicans on the continuing threat of Coronavirus and its impact on our Senate and District Conventions scheduled for March 21 and our biennial State Convention. 

Thank you to Texas Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick for updating us last night on President Trump’s work to combat Coronavirus nationally and the steps he and Governor Greg Abbott are taking to protect Texas communities. We are keeping them, and all Texans, in our thoughts and prayers.

I want to share a recap of last night’s call and reiterate our plan of action and offer guidance.

There are three immediate ways to receive critical updates going forward about your local Conventions and about our State Convention:
1. You can receive text message updates by texting the word “CONVENTION” right now to 72000;
2. You can receive email updates by emailing convention@texasgop.org; or,
3. You can visit our website at texasgop.org and submit your information on the home page.

As a refresher, the purpose of our biennial State Convention is to elect delegates to our National Convention, elect national and state officers, and adopt our platform, priorities, and rules.  The senate district and county conventions play a key role in that process, proposing platform planks and selecting delegates to represent them at the state convention. Obviously, their work must be completed prior to the state convention. 

In other words, there is a logical order to our local and state convention process — a process that has been made more difficult given the rapidly escalating restrictions on public gatherings.

The situation has been evolving quickly, as you are well aware, and we have been working hard to provide you with real-time information and communicate a plan of action that will allow us to fulfill our duties and obligations to our party, our delegates, our President, and ultimately, our nation. Especially at moments like these, communication is critical.

The Republican Party of Texas faces an unprecedented challenge in simultaneously accomplishing two conflicting missions:

1. Do our best to protect the health and safety of our people, their families and friends, and our communities.
2. Comply with Texas Election Code, RPT Rules, and the Rules of the Republican National Committee while safeguarding our delegates’ rights to be fully represented within our Party and at the Republican National Convention.

RPT respects and appreciates that our convention process exists to protect the four basic rights of delegates, which are as follows:

1. Every delegate has the right to attend the convention;
2. Every delegate has the right to make motions;
3. Every delegate has the right to speak in debate; 
4. Every delegate has the right to cast votes.

Sunday evening, the Centers for Disease Control issued an official recommendation to postpone or cancel meetings with 50 people or more for the next 8 weeks. Assuming it is not extended, this 8-week period ends during the timeframe of our biennial State Convention scheduled for May 11th – 16th. 

We took immediate action Sunday night, spoke with President Trump’s team in Texas, our statewide elected officials’ team, our RNC leaders in Texas and Washington and began the process in earnest to move the RPT Convention from May to July.

We are pleased to announce that we have confirmed the George R. Brown Convention Center will host our State Convention from July 13th – 18th. Hotel accommodations will also be available in much the same capacity as they were for May. 

It is important to understand the Republican Party of Texas and its rules are intentionally designed to be bottom-up. We are a Party of the grassroots — not a party of top-down authority.  While it is our intent to hold the State Convention July 13th -18th in Houston, a vote on these revised dates must take place at the April 4th State Republican Executive Committee Meeting. We anticipate being able to follow that meeting with official communications about hotel bookings and other logistical details. 

I know that Coronavirus is affecting different areas of Texas differently. Our urban areas seem to be more affected than some of our rural areas. Nevertheless, the recommendation from the CDC on Sunday and the advice from President Trump yesterday afternoon to limit groups to 10 or less for the next 15 days, directly impact the execution of the Senate District Conventions and County Conventions for March 21st. As a result, we gave our strongest recommendation to our Republican leaders yesterday to adjourn March 21st meetings to convene at another time and place outside the 8-week suspension period. We know some Senate Districts and Counties have been looking at dates in April, which is now within the 8-week suspension period. We strongly encouraged our leaders to look for dates outside the 8-week window.

If you are in an area that is holding a Senate District Convention, please contact your Senate District Convention Chairman for an update on your Convention. If you attend a County Convention, please contact your County Chair. If you live in a large urban area such as the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex, Harris County, or Bexar County, you can contact your County Party Chair for information about your Senate District Convention. 

Contact information for your County Chair can be found at this link on the RPT website: https://www.texasgop.org/county_chairs/

You can also email convention@texasgop.org or text the word “CONVENTION” to 72000 to request information about the contact for your county or Senate District Convention and to receive convention update notices.

The RPT and I will continue to provide updates as current events and these historic circumstances demand.

To recap key pieces of information:

  • The Republican Party of Texas has a clear plan to handle unprecedented challenges to our Convention process and is working extremely hard to ensure as smooth of a path forward as possible amidst a quickly evolving landscape.
  • It is our intent to move the State Convention from May 11th-16th to July 13th-18th in Houston, with the approval from the SREC on April 4th.
  • We strongly recommend to County Chairs and Temporary Senate District Convention Chairs that they adjourn the March 21st meetings to a date outside the 8-week CDC suspension window.
  • Please text ‘CONVENTION’ TO 72000 to stay up-to-date via text, email convention@texasgop.org to be added to our convention update email list or visit texasgop.org to submit your information for updates.
  • We will continue communicating with you as details emerge and circumstances require.  

I want to thank RPT Staff, our RPT Parliamentarian, Chris Howe, and our RPT General Counsel, Wade Emmert, who have been working around-the-clock to provide solutions for our Republican grassroots leaders throughout Texas and to ensure our Conventions at all levels are held with as much engagement and transparency as possible for our delegates. 

I want to thank our Republican leaders – our RNC National Committeeman Dr. Robin Armstrong, our RNC National Committeewoman Toni Anne Dashiell, RPT Vice Chair Alma Jackson, our county chairs, Temporary Senate District Convention Chairs, precinct chairs, and the many dedicated volunteers across our great state – who are working tirelessly to see your rights as delegates come to full fruition at the state and national level with transparency, with adherence to our RPT and RNC rules and, most importantly, in the safest manner possible.

In this time of challenge, we cannot afford to give anything less than the best of ourselves. As President Trump often says, we are in this together. And, as Texans, we know we will persevere together. So let us encourage one another, pray for each other, and take care of each other. Let’s faithfully exercise our rights and execute the business and obligations of our Republican Party. Let us continue to prepare for victory in November. Let us pray for God to grant our leaders wisdom, and us patience and fortitude during this historic time.

God bless you, and may God continue to bless our great state of Texas. 

Sincerely,

James Dickey, Chairman, Republican Party of Texas

End Taxpayer-Funded Lobbying!

Understand the Issue

Pass legislation to abolish all forms of taxpayer-funded lobbying and end the automatic payroll deduction of union dues by the government.”

— Republican Party of Texas legislative priority

The Problem

  • Under current state law, political subdivisions may spend public funds to hire lobbyists for the purpose of supporting or opposing measures under consideration by the state legislature. According to the Texas Ethics Commission, political subdivisions spent an estimated $16 million on lobbyist compensation in 2015.
  • Also under current state law, governments can automatically deduct union dues from their employees’ paychecks, and these dues can then be used to fund political activity.  These political activities may be contrary to the preferences of the taxpayers, who are, in essence, funding the dues collection and distribution.
  • Taxpayers and ratepayers of political subdivisions and special districts that hire lobbyists are forced to pay for lobby efforts of their jurisdiction, even if these efforts take positions contrary to their policy preferences. As an example, homeowners may prefer lower property taxes or even the complete replacement of property taxes, while a taxing jurisdiction may be employing lobbyists to protect or even raise property taxes.
  • Given that the interests of citizens may differ from those of their local governments, citizens’ legislative lobby efforts toward state elected officials might be adversely affected by the distinct disadvantage they face when contending with the agenda of taxpayer-funded lobbyists hired by political subdivisions.
  • Many lobbyists participate in the political process through campaign contributions, fundraising, electioneering, and other political activities. The receipt of public dollars by these individuals presents the possibility that public funds could be used to directly or indirectly fund political activity.

The Solution

  • Ban political subdivisions with taxing authority from hiring lobbyists, from paying dues to an association of similarly-situated entities which lobbies, and from automatically deducting union dues.

What People Are Saying

“I believe the public has a right to know that their locally elected officials and associations could be using their taxpayer dollars to directly or indirectly influence the legislative process against the best interest of the Texans they represent. We should do everything we can to ensure that the public trust is never broken and do away with taxpayer-funded lobbying.“

–Konni Burton, Texas State Senator

In 2017, lobbying disclosure forms also reveal an interesting data point: 11 percent of lobbying dollars spent that year—as much as $41 million—was spent by government to hire outside lobbyists to lobby government. This figure excludes government employees who may spend some of their time lobbying other parts of government or their agency. This taxpayer funded lobbying is problematic. How can one part of a representative government petition itself or a “redress of grievances” to another part of government?”

-Chuck DeVore, Vice President of National Initiatives

Talk to Your Community

Are you all in? Share these sample social media posts to start the conversation with your friends. Use the talking points to drive your message home when talking with friends or reporters. Send the sample Letter to the Editor to your local newspaper to spread the word.

Sample Tweets:

  • Taxpayers should not be paying for government to lobby against them. #EndTaxFundedLobbying
  • Government should not be collecting and distributing union dues for the unions. #StopGovernmentCollectionOfUnionDues
  • Using tax dollars to advocate policies that are not in the taxpayers best interest should be made illegal #EndTaxFundedLobbying
  • I don’t want my tax dollars being used to lobby against my best interests! #EndTaxFundedLobbying
  • Tax dollars should be used to help the people, not lobby against their best interests! #EndTaxFundedLobbying

Messaging:

  • State agencies are banned from using taxpayer money for lobbying. Local taxing authorities should be as well.
  • Taxpayer money should not be diverted for helping government grow.
  • Taxpayer money should never be permitted to be used directly or indirectly for campaign contributions.
  • Many states ALREADY ban taxpayer funded lobbying. Texas is long overdue to do so.  http://www.ncsl.org/research/ethics/50-state-chart-limits-on-public-funds-to-lobby.aspx

Letter to the Editor:

Please submit a letter to the editor of your local paper(s) and become active on social media on this issue. Below is a sample letter to the editor that you can customize, personalize, and submit to your local newspaper. Be sure to check and follow your paper’s guidelines for length and submission.

Paying Austin Lobbyists should NOT be a part of the local taxpayers burden

Did you know that a portion of your property taxes are funding Austin-based big government lobbying firms?  As tragic as it sounds, many counties, cities, school districts and other taxing jurisdictions employ high-priced consultant lobbyists.  This not only drives up the cost of government, but more egregiously, the lobbyists may be tasked with working AGAINST the very taxpayers that are paying for them!  Additionally, they may well be working against those very taxpayers for other clients. Last, in Texas, unlike many other states who ban or restrict outside lobbyists being paid by government, there is nothing to prevent those lobbyists from donating a portion of their taxpayer “pay” back to elected officials!

Your name

Your town

Daytime phone number

E-mail address

Talk to Your Legislators

Make a Phone Call

It’s easy — find your state representative and senator and their contact info using the resource list on this page. Call their district office and/or their Capitol office. You’ll speak to an office staffer. Tell them you’re a constituent. Tell them what issue interests you and why. Ask what your legislator plans to do to promote the issue.

Visit the Capitol — or your local district office!

When you call, ask for an appointment with your legislator (or alternatively, their chief of staff or legislative director). Or just drop by their district or Capitol office during regular business hours — leave your card or a note with the staffer.

Testify in a Hearing

The year and a half in between legislative sessions is called the “interim” period. During this period, the House and Senate committees hold hearings to study specific issues, or “charges” that are assigned by the Speaker and Lt. Governor.

This year’s interim charges include important items such as health care reform, reducing the tax burden, school choice, Second Amendment rights, and religious freedoms. Many of the charges relate to planks or priorities from the RPT platform.

Although bills cannot be passed since we’re not within an actual legislative session, these interim hearings are the Legislature’s way of reaching out to you for your opinion on important issues. By studying these issues now, our Senators and Representatives can be prepared to pass bills in 2019 that address the specifics you’ll bring to their attention.

Most of these hearings will include a time for public testimony — that’s your chance to make your voice heard.

Resources:

  • Texas Legislature Online — http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/ — your resource for committee hearings, bills from current & past legislative sessions, committee membership, and more
  • Texas Tribune Legislative Directory –– www.texastribune.org/directory/ — find phone numbers, office locations, contact info, & social media accounts for all the Texas legislators & other electeds
  • Interim Hearing Tracker — www.texasgop.org/85interim/ — see all the current interim charges that relate to RPT platform planks & committee hearing information
  • STAT — www.texasgop.org/stat/ — join the Strategic Texas Action Team to receive alerts when your help is needed to promote conservative policy

Update from Chairman Dickey, December 2019

Dear Fellow Texas Republicans,

The holiday season has wrapped up and we are officially in 2020. As 2019 came to a close, the Republican Party of Texas was busy preparing for November 2020. December wrapped up candidate filing for the Republican primary. Last month we confirmed that there is a Republican candidate challenging every Democrat in all 36 Congressional districts and all targeted State Representative races. The number of women running for office in Texas also doubled compared to the 2018 Primary.

A crucial part of achieving these outstanding results was the Candidate Recruiting Task Force which was led by Hamilton County GOP Chair Cat Parks. The program was a huge success for recruiting candidates and accomplishing one of the Republican Party of Texas’ top campaign priorities – challenging every Democrat incumbent in Congress and  targeted State House races. 

In December, I traveled to Washington, D.C. for my quarterly visit with the Texas Republican Congressional Delegation. While there, I attended a press conference on the importance of passing the United States, Mexico and Canada Trade Agreement. 

At the 4th Quarter SREC Meeting, we held the Volunteer of the Year dinner with Senator John Cornyn to celebrate and honor the outstanding volunteers that are the foundation of our work. I am extremely thankful for our volunteers across the state who are putting in the work to keep Texas red. If you want to help us keep Texas red, please text VEP to 72000 now and we’ll get you plugged in. 

Other pictures from the month of November:


I attended a luncheon in Dallas with Ambassador Nikki Haley to hear about her experiences as a U.S. Ambassador. While in Washington, D.C. I had a meeting at the White House. I also attended the RNC White House Christmas Party. I had the honor of attending the Helping a Hero Gala where wounded heroes were honored for this service to our great country. I attended Governor and First Lady Abbott’s Annual Christmas Party at the Governor’s Mansion.

Weekly Updates:

Week One-
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p970oMKln4U
Week Two-
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cIGrHxnUVUY
Week Three-
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QXFJVJSDf3M
Week Four-
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gBnxbLddkIY&feature=youtu.be

Like and subscribe to our YouTube Channel to get these updates in real time!

News Articles:

  • 12.03
  • 12.04
  • 12.07
  • 12.09
  • 12.10
  • 12.11
  • 12.17
  • 12.19
  • 12.30

Press Releases:

If you want to be in the loop on news about your Texas Republican Party and elected officials, text TXNEWS to 72000 now! 

Chairman’s Update – January 2019

Dear Fellow Texas Republican,

The month of January brought with it a lot of news, including the opening of the 86th Legislative Session, several special elections, a new Speaker of the Texas House, and much more. We have continued to prepare for the battles ahead and 2020 by looking into new strategies and processes to engage more Republicans than ever before. I spent much of my time meeting with Republican elected officials to hear their concerns and to find out how the Republican Party of Texas can help them both during the 86th Legislature and in future elections. We also had the opportunity to attend the Republican National Committee Winter Meeting where we re-elected Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel to another term. It has been a full and productive month.

Shortly after the new year, Texas’ 86th Legislative Session was called to order. Several Republicans were sworn in for the first time to represent the districts which elected them. The Texas House also elected a new Speaker – Representative Dennis Bonnen of Angleton. He has already shown he will be an effective Speaker and is willing to tackle issues like property tax and school finance head on.

Following the opening of Session, Governor Greg Abbott and Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick were inaugurated. They hosted several events including the Abbott Grassroots Reception and the Inaugural Ball – headlined by the King of Country, George Strait! This gave me a good opportunity to speak with grassroots activists, donors, and elected officials about the Republican Party of Texas’ plans during this Session and for 2020.

During the month of January, we also hosted a new member orientation at the Republican Party of Texas headquarters with our new elected officials. We discussed what they would like to see from the RPT and how we can help them. Thank you to Rep. Steve Allison, Rep. Keith Bell, Rep. Brad Buckley, Rep. Cody Harris, Rep. Ben Leman, Rep. Mayes Middleton, Rep. Reggie Smith, and Rep. Steve Toth for attending or sending a representative on your behalf. We look forward to working with all of our elected officials to accomplish the policy goals that Texans need!

On January 18th, we sat down with the Texas Secretary of State’s team and the Texas Democrats to discuss the upcoming elections. We discussed many items, especially the wait times at polling locations in 2018 and what we might do to expedite the process in the future. While we are happy that 2020 marks the elimination of straight ticket voting in Texas, the consequence – in conjunction with an enormous anticipated turnout – will likely be long lines at polling locations. We discussed potential solutions for this while still ensuring that all election laws are followed. We look forward to working with the Texas Secretary of State to ensure that citizens registered to vote in Texas are able to do so in the most efficient way that still ensures ballot integrity.

I had my first opportunity to meet with the House Caucus as a group and with the Speaker and several other members. These meetings were an important first step towards the kind of productive partnership needed this cycle between the party and all of our elected officials.

I was fortunate to have to the opportunity to travel to Tomball to meet with the Yellow Rose of Texas Republican Women. It was great to see current and former SREC members as well as many active and engaged Republicans who are ready to work toward electing Republicans throughout the Tomball area.

It was a pleasure to attend the training on January 19th in Uvalde which was organized by Marian Knowlton, both our Atascosa County Chair and our SREC SD 19 Committeewoman. Uvalde County Chairman Jeff Santleben and the Uvalde County Republican Party were excellent hosts for this event and we particularly enjoyed hearing from State Senator Peter Flores.  Our Organization Director Brandon Moore, San Jacinto County Chairman and TRCCA Vice-President Dwayne Wright, and Jon Williams with Cool Conservatives PAC all had excellent presentations.

The RNC Winter Meeting took place January 23rd-25th in Albuquerque, New Mexico. During the meeting we elected Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel to another term leading the RNC and elected Texan Tommy Hicks as Co-Chairman. I’ve had the privilege of knowing Tommy for years and I look forward to working with him as we fight to defend Texas in 2020!

We also had the opportunity to present the case for a significant increase in the RNC’s investment in Texas. We can no longer take Texas’ 38 electoral votes for granted and must vigorously fight to defend them! There is no path to winning the White House in 2020 without Texas. If you would like to join the fight, text TXNEWS to 72000 right now to keep up with what the RPT is doing to defend our values!

While in New Mexico, we spent time meeting with current and potential digital and technology firms that are offering innovative voter engagement and grassroots tools that will improve our efforts to build the volunteer army we need to engage voters in the coming elections.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family of former Webb County Chairman Randy Blair who passed away in January. We owe him a debt of gratitude for his service and dedication to our party and to our shared values. We also owe him our thanks for finding a qualified individual to take over, Chairman Bill Young. Chairman Young kicked things off in a powerful way by putting together this incredible event. We had both SREC members for SD 21, numerous Young Republicans, and dozens of potential precinct chairs. It’s incredibly exciting to see that kind of energy in what has traditionally been a blue county!

We would like to extend our thanks to Senator John Cornyn for joining our montly County Chair conference call and updating our County Chairs on what he is seeing in D.C. He also discussed the challenges he knows we face in Texas in 2020. We look forward to working with Senator Cornyn to ensure we elect qualified Republican leaders across the state of Texas.

During the month of January there were two Special Elections: Texas House District 79 in El Paso and Texas House District 145 in Houston. We had Republican candidates in both races. In HD 79, Hans Sassenfeld stepped up to run in a heavily blue district and showed the importance of challenging Democrats for every seat. In HD 145, Martha Fierro ran a hard campaign in yet another heavily blue area and did an excellent job of exemplifying Republican values. Thank you to them both for their service.

As we approach 2020, we know that we must prioritize candidate recruitment so that we can challenge every incumbent Democrat in Texas. We cannot allow any Democrat to coast through the General Election. Our message of quality education, property tax reform, and maintaining our booming economy is one that will resonate with all who hear it and we owe it to all Texans to make sure it is presented in every race in every district. That is why we have created the Candidate Recruitment Task Force to be led by Hamilton County Chair Cat Parks. Chair Parks has been a strong advocate for representative government and Republican values. She is passionate about identifying and recruiting quality candidates that we need to win in 2020. I am confident she will do an exceptional job as Chair of our Candidate Recruitment Task Force.

January was a busy time for Texas Republicans. This is just the beginning, and the months ahead will only get busier as we fight for our shared values and to elect Republicans in 2020.

If you want to stay in the loop with what we’re doing, text TXNEWS to 72000 now!

Sincerely,

James R. Dickey
Chairman
Republican Party of Texas

Chairman Dickey’s Update – 5.29.2018

Fellow Texas Republicans,

This past weekend we have spent time remembering the men and women who laid down their lives for the goal of preserving liberty to us and our posterity. How blessed we are to live in the greatest nation on earth — one that strives to preserve the freedom given to us by God, implemented by our Founding Fathers, and embodied in the Constitution. God bless and keep the military families who have suffered the loss of their loved ones.

It’s been another wonderful week for meeting with great Texans! This week my travels were focused on South Texas.

What a pleasure it was to meet delegates and alternates from SD-19 for a convention training in Pleasanton last week — some of whom drove for hours to be there. Many will be first-time delegates and I’m glad to see them taking their responsibility seriously. I enjoyed seeing SREC members Terri DuBose (SD-19) and Naomi Narvaiz (SD-21), and five county chairs: Marian Knowlton (Atascosa), Rita Jordan (Karnes) Jack DuBose (Real), Jeff Santleben (Uvalde), and Ruby Manen (Wilson).

Wednesday I spoke at the San Antonio Republican Club along with Bexar County Chair Mark Dorazio (also SREC from SD-25). I appreciate the invitation from Marian Stanko and Fred Rangel (SREC from SD-26). Many club members will be volunteering at convention to help your experience to be better. A couple hundred miles away I was able to see Fort Bend and Harris County Chairs Jacey Jetton and Paul Simpson later that day.

Over the weekend I went further south to Hidalgo and Webb counties. I’m thankful for the hard work of Republicans in the Rio Grande Valley who talk about our Republican principles in ways that bring in those who share the values but had never before considered themselves Republican. I visited with many of those at a meet and greet in McAllen hosted by the leadership of the newly reconstituted Rio Grande Valley Republican Women’s Club where I met some of the great candidates, delegates and precinct chairs as well as Janie Melendez (SREC, SD-20) and Hidalgo County Chair Sergio Sanchez. I also traveled to Laredo where I visited with Webb County Chair Randy Blair and Naomi Narvaiz (SREC, SD-21) and a great group of candidates, precinct chairs, delegates and other active Republicans.

I’m thrilled to have visited all 31 State Senate Districts during my first year in office – exactly as I’d promised. It’s such a joy to meet and get to know so many hardworking Republicans across our state, listen to their ideas, and make sure they know that they have our encouragement and support.

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