TEXAS 2016 Republican State Convention has come and gone!

The 2016 convention was held in Dallas, at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center, Texas May 12 through May 14. There were a grand total of 8,994 delegates making it the largest in the country. Over 10,000 people were in attendance including pages, vendors, and guests. I’ve lost track as to how many Republican conventions I’ve attended, some good others not so good. First let me say that the majority of the Texas delegation must have been happy with the performance of past leadership since Tom Mechler was reelected as our state party chairman and Amy Clark was reelected vice chairman. Robin Armstrong and Toni Anne Dashiell were also reelected as the Texas committeeman and committeewoman.

The welcoming speech by Governor Gregg Abbott was very respectful towards Senator Ted Cruz. He received a standing ovation when he said, “To Protect the constitution to advance conservative ideals, I joined with a friend who is the preeminently a constitutionalist, a man who has tirelessly fought, for religious liberty, for life, for marriage, for 2nd amendment rights, a man who did more than anyone to fight against Obamacare, that man is my friend, Ted Cruz.” Our Governor went on to say, “I know Ted. Ted is a true conservative, he deserves our enduring respect.” Of course, he also emphasized that we must unite to defeat Hillary in November.

Our governor also took his book tour to the convention. His book, ‘Broken but Unbowed’ had not been officially released. He customized and signed each book individually for those that wanted to buy his book for $30.31 including tax. It was released right after the convention closed, May 17.

When Lt. Gov Dan Patrick addressed the delegates, he made it clear that Texans were not going to capitulate to transgender bathrooms. He promised to reduce property taxes in the next session. He also spoke about Ted Cruz by saying he would have made a great president. He mentioned Ted’s supporters. “I know that the time for healing will come faster than others but folks we must unite, we must come together. We must support our Republican nominee for president DT.” I felt like Lt. Gov Patrick was speaking directly to me. I’m not sure if I can pivot as quickly as other conservatives because my Christian values are part of who I am. Can I betray my life long values for the Republican Party over God and Country? Individual conscience will play a large part in November as DT is the only nominee we have.

On Saturday morning we woke up with great anticipation because Ted Cruz was going to address the delegates. Our caucus CD21 begun at 8 am hoping to be finished prior to his speech. The caucus went overtime, but some of us broke ranks to hear our hero. After all, this was the highlight for me and for many who wanted to listen to what Senator Cruz had to say. We definitely were not disappointed. I managed to get an almost perfect view of Ted, Heidi and his daughters Catherine and Caroline from the front row. He profusely thanked his supporters in the audience and his volunteers, some 50,000 in Texas and 317,000 across the country. He spoke of his vision for the future, just pouring his heart out in telling us that he will continue to fight the good fight.

Cruz spoke of the conservative core principles:

  1. Our rights don’t come from the government, they come from God Almighty
  2. Government is not the solution, government is the problem
  3. Economic growth is foundational to everyone
  4. We have got to protect and follow the constitution and the Bill of Rights
  5. We understand peace through strength

To a standing ovation, he said that the government has three duties, to secure the border, deliver the mail and keep us safe and that is all. When he said we need a strong conservative president who will repeal Common Core and abolish the department of education, he received another standing ovation. We deserve a president who will have your back, referring to the first responders. I had to wonder about his presidential statements. Was he thinking on a 2020 run? He continued saying that he was planning on fighting in the US Senate for the same principles he fought for during the campaign, jobs, security, and freedom. He was passionate about what he was saying and the delegates devoured every word spoken by him.

State Senator Donna Campbell‘s District 25 is the largest SD in Texas with 488 delegates. Her enthusiasm always manages to get everyone’s attention when she speaks to her constituents. The SREC, State Republican Executive Committee, man and women were elected to represent each Senatorial District. SD25 reelected Linda Kinney, Hays County, and elected Mark Dorazio, Bexar County. Janet Blum from Comal County was elected to be on the State Nominating committee representing SD25.

Congressional District 21 is also the largest in the state with 401 delegates. Bexar County Party Chairman, Robert Stovall, led the caucus in electing delegates to the National convention as well as other party business.

CRUZ delegate - Diane Denman, Bexar County; Alternate -  Reid Wilson, Kerr County

CRUZ delegate - Brian McAuliffe, Hays County; Alternate - Mark Dorazio, Bexar County

TRUMP delegate - Bill Welch, Travis County; Alternate - Shaun Ireland, Travis County

Curt Nelson, Bexar County, was elected as the Elector from CD21. Mary Lou Erben was elected as the Elector and Jennifer Beckham was elected alternate delegate both from Comal County and CD23. Unfortunately, Comal County the second largest delegation in CD21 did not even have a delegate or alternate candidate to offer for the National Convention in Cleveland. For more information on the delegates for our July National Republican Convention to be held in Cleveland, Ohio, from July 18-21, please follow the link provided.

The 8,000 or so delegates that remained to the bitter end on Saturday, May 14 were given an opportunity to scale down the number of planks in the platform. This is the first time a ballot was provided so that delegates could read each plank individually. After the ballots were distributed the doors were closed until all delegates completed voting. In my opinion, we don’t need all the planks to be included but having to read through all 266 made it very difficult as 8,000 plus delegates have differing opinions. All 266 planks were voted in and will remain in the platform. Plank number 84 on homosexuality was incorrectly written and made the news and Susan Vavrick, National Public Radio’s copy chief has already recommended changes.

This year, more than before, more families attended the convention. My hope is that this trend continues. There were parents with a teenager, moms with sons, entire families, and of course husbands and wives that were part of the 8,994 delegates. Texans know what keeps Texas RED!

One other incident that I found amusing if not interesting is the fact that DT reserved a room for at least 400 people but was a ‘no show’. He didn’t even bother to cancel his event with the restaurant. Does this in any way bother you? DT ‘thought’ about attending but decided against meeting his ‘Texas’ supporters. The hashtag #unitetowin2016 was used by the convention in hopes of uniting for the November election. Will the #cruzcrew ever absolve DT for his malicious lies? Only time will tell.

Here are my suggestions for 2018: 1. Please have water available to delegates in their senate district and/or congressional districts so parched delegates don’t have to search for water. 2. Plan ahead to improve time allowed for each caucus so delegates can make all sessions. 3. Pay someone to proofread party platform before printing.

All in all I would say it was a good convention with some kinks but isn’t that part of life? We THANK YOU TED and HEIDI for sharing your conservative values with America!

Fight, Fight, Fight!

Texas State Convention 2016 Governor Greg Abbott GOD BLESS TEXAS!

Lt. Gov Dan Patrick





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