Recap of the 2013 Texas Young Republican Federation Convention
The Young Republicans of Texas have a good thing going. After just wrapping up my first YR State Convention as a card-carrying member myself, I am impressed. The first thing that comes to mind in my reflections is the level of sheer continuous activity and opportunity available to us at the convention from check-in Friday evening and check-out Sunday morning. It had everything a good convention should have, a perfect balance between doing the real business of the convention and then the real reason we come – to hear our favorite speakers and shake their hands.
We began Friday by checking in and rushing to committee hearings so that we could, for example, later amend our Constitution or choose the site for the next convention. Then we were able to take a break and have a reception in our beautiful hotel with Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Phil Johnson and candidate for Attorney General, Railroad Commissioner Barry Smitherman. We had some laughs then broke off to either finish committee meetings or head to the late night reception hosted by the Texas Federation of Hispanic Republicans, some just went ahead and did both.
Saturday began with breakout sessions on topics from how to build our local YR chapters to fighting the pro-life battle to ballot integrity, featuring premier GOP organizations in Texas. We heard from speakers at True the Vote, Texas Right to Life, Texas Conservative Coalition and our own State Chairman, Mark C. Brown. After these interactive meetings, we walked from the State Capitol to a local Mexican restaurant for lunch and had the chance to meet and hear from more of our insightful GOP candidates. First we heard from State Rep. Stephani Carter who is running for Railroad Commissioner, then State Rep. Sarah Davis who is running for reelection. Both are strong Republican women in their own right, with fresh ideas on economics and energy production.
After given opportunity to have much conversation with Rep. Carter and Rep. Davis, we walked back to the Capitol to handle the business portion of the convention. Where did we get to do this? We had our business meeting on the floor of the Texas House of Representatives, sitting in their chairs, using the speaker’s gavel, and giving speeches at their lecterns. Talk about a confidence boost for us legislator hopefuls. Good call, whoever booked that. Throughout the meeting, we seemed to follow the tradition of hearing from a few candidates for office. First we heard from Railroad Commissioner candidates, Malachi Boyuls and Joe Pool, Jr. on what they were going to do for the office. Mind you, we are always very grateful when a railroad commissioner candidate happens to slip in the purpose of the office in their stump speech. We also had the pleasure of hearing from state representative candidate, Adryana Boyne. Adryana Boyne is running for the Texas House in District 102, a Dallas area seat. Mrs. Boyne is a charismatic speaker with an honest passion for the great state of Texas. Then we had our own lively debates on amendments and resolutions and finished up by electing a fresh new TYRF board.
Adryana Boyne speaking on the House floor
The evening began with a private reception with the greatest Attorney General in the United States, AG Greg Abbott. Abbott is on the campaign trail this time seeking to serve Texans now as Governor. Then we headed to our much anticipated gala, dressed to impress, to have dinner with Gubernatorial candidate, Tom Pauken, and Lieutenant Governor candidate, Commissioner Todd Staples. It was a lovely evening, doing regular Republican things, like auctioning off AR-15s, 30 round magazines and 10 person shooting range gift cards. One really could not ask for more.
The 2013 Texas Young Republican Convention was a great success. Sure, there are things to improve upon, but we’ll get there. Congratulations to all the officers of the 2013-2014 TYRF board. Chairman Richard Morgan of Dallas, we have faith in you, and we look forward to what’s in store for the upcoming year.