The Future of Republicanism to Gather in Austin Next Week - Texas Young Republican Federation Convention Aug 9-11
Last week, CNN asked if the "Young Republican" are "The Republicans of the Future?" Many would say that is a resounding YES! Last week, the National Federation of Young Republicans held their annual meeting in Mobile, Alabama. Next weekend (August 9-11) Texas will host its own convention of Young Republicans as the Texas Federation of Young Republicans march into Austin, Texas.
New Hampshire Young Republican Tyler Denton told CNN, "The GOP has become too much of a club that defines itself by who it's leaving out," he says. "And I think the GOP has to do a better job of defining itself by its ideas, and letting anybody who shares those ideas come in and be a part of it."
That is the spirit I have witnessed in the Young Republicans I have met with. I have been watching the Houston Young Republicans (HYR) for quite some time now. Under their new leadership team, the HYR's have been tackling many controversial issues including Republicans vs Gays and other social conservative issues and dealing with them in a way that shows the fresh ideas that are needed by the senior Republicans if the party is to survive and attract the votes of young people who have been leaving the party in droves the past few elections.
This weekend's meeting at the Omni Hotel in downtown Austin promises to be an exciting event and I would encourage anyone interested in learning more about the youth movement of Republicanism come register for the event and check out the agenda packed with great speakers and presentations.
TYR Chairman Mark Brown said he is expecting well over a hundred delegates from Young Republican chapters from all across Texas. Friday night begins with a kickoff Reception hosted by Texas Railroad Commission Chairman Barry Smitherman. Smitherman is also a candidate for the office of Texas Attorney General to replace Greg Abbott who is running for governor.
Saturday morning begins with presentations and training from conservative organizations like the Texas Conservative Coalition, Texas Right to Life, True the Vote and Texas YR Chairman Mark Brown. Lunchtime and afternoon speakers include State Representatives Stefani Carter (running for Railroad Commission) and Sarah Davis followed by the Gala keynote speeches from Texas Ag Commissioner Todd Staples (candidate for Lt. Governor) and Gubernatorial Candidate Tom Pauken.
The convention wraps up on Sunday morning with Executive Board meetings and then the long road home after what will be a very exciting meeting.
CNN spoke with Texas YR delegate and TexasGOPVote blogger Artemio Muniz who grew up in Houston as the son of illegal immigrants. Temo and I have talked at great lengths about immigration reform and how some Republicans talk about "anchor babies." Temo talked to CNN about some of his early encounters with conservative groups and said, "I've been at Tea Party meetings where the lady is saying, 'Let's deport them all,' and the lady that's serving her is an illegal immigrant bringing her nacho chips." But he became a Republican, he told CNN, because the party represents promise. The Mexican community has pride, he says, and its beliefs fit with the conservatism of the Republican Party and its leaders.
I would encourage anyone interested in this event or these speakers to register this week for the discounted rate of $55 versus $100 at the door. I have been invited by the Texas YRs to attend and cover the weekend's festivities. This promises to be a very exciting weekend and I hope to see you there!