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RPT 10: Unify to Keep Hands Off Texas
I attended the 2010 Republican Party of Texas Convention in Dallas this past week as a reporter, blogger, and as part of the campaign team for former State Chairman Cathie Adams.
Shortly after the hectic floor race for chairman that ended with Steve Munisteri of Houston defeating incumbent Chairman Adams, I walked with a heavy heart to the other side of the convention center where a little girl ran in front of me, decorated with what seemed like campaign stickers from every booth in the convention hall and a handful of Greg Abbott flags poking out of her hair. She was sporting a red Hands Off Texas foam hand and skipped back and forth. She looked me in the eyes, smiled, and squealed, “Hands oooooff Texaaaas!”
Despite my distress over the results of the chairman’s race, which I referred to as “political mourning,” I couldn’t help but crack a smile at this little girl’s enthusiasm. If this were a movie scene, you can bet a patriotic tune would have started playing right then and there.
I really wish I could have taken that little girl on stage and showed her off to the entire delegation. Surely she didn’t know about all the politicking that occurred at the convention that weekend, the less-than-clean campaigning, and how crushed or excited certain attendees were about the outcomes of the elections that were going on right in front of her eyes.
The passion and zeal this little girl displayed when she waved her giant foam hand at me was pure and unaffected by politics of the weekend.
At least someone at the convention understood what needs to be done if Republicans want to win seats back in Washington in November.
Obviously, I supported Cathie Adams for chairman. She is a courageous and downright amazing woman that I believed would give her all in order to help Texas remain red and turn our country back in the right direction. If it weren’t for Mrs. Adams, my involvement in partisan politics wouldn’t have gone much farther than a small Tea Party rally in my hometown last year. After I heard Mrs. Adams speak at that small Tea Party, I continued to keep in touch with her. The passion and excitement she always expressed about politics never failed to get me fired up to fight for conservative values. I am not alone in saying she has become a role model for me, as I know another fellow young blogger who expressed the same sentiment at his Senatorial District Caucus this past week.
And obviously, I was very hurt when a hectic floor vote turned my admired role model into an ex-chairman.
However, that little girl with the foam hand made me think twice about what my role model would have done in this situation. Would Cathie Adams retreat after a failed election or would she be the bigger person and continue to fight for what is right? While I did not support Chairman Munisteri in the chairman’s race, he is now the leader of our party. It is up to all Texas conservatives to support him in leading the fight to keep Texas red and keep Texas Republicans fighting for a redder Washington.
Unlike the little girl with the foam hand, most of the attendees of the convention were afflicted with inner-party politics from myself to the young man in front of me who received quite a scolding from another delegate after screaming about something or another during the first general session. While there is a place and time for inner-party politics (such as the platform committee room at the convention that some of us are guilty of spending a bit too much time in), here and now is not that place and time.
If Republicans want to defeat the Dems in November, we need to step up our attitude from the convention and simply get excited about being on the right side of the political spectrum just like the little girl with the foam hand. It is only by banding together along with leaders like Chairman Munisteri that we can make sure to keep the government’s hands off Texas.