Dear SREC Members,
This is the second installment of the updates I will be sending out weekly, and I want to thank all of you for making these past two weeks very successful as we are seeking to grow our Party. Working together toward that goal is what will bring true unity within our ranks. We had another packed schedule this week full of exciting announcements and plans. There was a significant increase in engagement with the press, our social media outlets, our elected officials, and our base. With the special session inching closer, we have made our Platform front and center and are on the march to uphold our Republican principles.
The Legislative Priorities Committee provided input on the letters sent yesterday to the Lt. Governor and the Speaker of the House regarding the special session. I appreciate the committee’s staunch commitment to promoting the Legislative Priorities. See below for more on the letter.
In response to a request made at the SREC meeting, we have located a team of highly qualified ASL translators who have submitted a quote and contract. They will interpret the entire September 23rd SREC meeting and will work with us to spread to the deaf and hard of hearing community that the Republican Party is one in which their participation is desired and appreciated. On the gracious invitation of Committeewoman Vicki Slaton, I will be joining her for a reception honoring Senator Bob Hall in Dallas next Thursday evening. I look forward to visiting with every SD at least once over the next year.
This week I had several positive introductory meetings with large corporate and individual donors, including some who had not previously given to the RPT. Some of those conversations led to commitments for contributions that should arrive before our June 30 reporting deadline. Those that do not should follow shortly thereafter.
The Denton County Lincoln Cabinet, a county fundraising event, was held last night. I was not able to attend, but our very capable Vice Chair Amy Clark and National Committeewoman Toni Anne Dashiell provided an excellent report on the state of RPT for the elite donor circle. The panel discussion, led by County Chair Lisa Hendrickson, included the topics of the special session and improving communication with grassroots.
An RPT fundraising event planned before my election was also held last night and hosted by our Finance Chair, Thomas Gleason. I was not able to attend this event either, but reports are that the funds raised will have exceeded initial estimates by a significant amount. We have been finalizing calls and arrangements for a very special Juneteenth event with South Carolina Senator Tim Scott and Texas State Senator Larry Taylor in Houston for Monday morning which includes multiple fundraising components. We appreciate Senators Scott and Taylor generously sharing their time and the White House political office’s efforts to arrange for this opportunity for the RPT to commemorate this day of liberty and freedom in a meaningful way.
Finally, we opened a brand new RPT merchandise store online. We are working toward really celebrating RPT’s 150th anniversary this year, and an online store with fabulous RPT gear is a great start. You can check it out by clicking here.
Given the events of this week, I could not begin this section in any other way than to ask that your thoughts and prayers be with the Congressmen and staffers who were victims in the horrific attack in Washington, D.C. Our hearts go out to them and their families. You can read my statement here .
Here in Texas, we were able to release on Wednesday a statement on the vetoes issued by the Governor that prevented the enaction of laws contrary to RPT Platform plank items .
Yesterday, our interns hand-delivered my letter to the Lt. Governor and Speaker offering the full support of RPT to pass plank-related items included in the Governor’s call. I asked them to identify which legislators will be taking point on each issue, and requested that they join us in calling on the Governor to add remaining priority items to the call. All the Republican members of the House and Senate were sent a copy of the letter as well.
We have also had in-person and phone conversations with many Texas Republican officeholders and have been overwhelmed by the support and encouragement they have offered.
We met at length with the Governor’s campaign staff and are excited about the opportunities we have to work together with them and the RNC to improve our data and field operations. These efforts will make it possible for us to offer invaluable information to our engagement staff, SREC members, County Chairs, Precinct Chairs and candidates going forward.
With all that happened in the news this week, we were prepared to deliver timely, meaningful statements to the press, including a statement on the horrific shooting of our elected officials and their staffers in Virginia on Wednesday. We were also able to utilize our social media as a place for relevant information on Party platform planks being signed into law, President Trump’s birthday, and promoting our special session webinar.
See the following list for all of our media statements and appearances this week:
– RPT: Governor Abbott’s Vetoes Show Platform Matters
– RPT Chairman James Dickey Statement on the Gunman at Congressional Baseball Practice
– RPT Chairman James Dickey Statement on the Hiring of John Drogin as Senior Political Advisor
– KXDJ (Radio)
– The Chad Hasty Show (Radio)
– Trey Blocker Show (Podcast)
-Vice-Chair Amy Clark- Raging Elephants Radio (Radio)
– Dallas Morning News Article on Texas House Races (Chairman’s Statement at End)
-Inside Texas Politics (WFAA TV Channel 8 – airs Sunday in DFW)
-Gus Bova – Texas Observer (Print)
This week we have worked with the White House political office on planning both our Juneteenth event and our visits to the White House to meet with them next week. While in DC I will also meet with the Republican members of the Texas congressional delegation and their staff.
I am personally looking forward to meeting with our former RPT Chairman, Steve Munisteri, for however long he is able to step away from his official duties. The opportunity to get the input of so many people into how we can best prepare for 2018 and advance the conservative agenda that our country desperately needs is truly incredible.
We are excited to have John Drogin join our staff as Senior Political Advisor. We released a statement on his hire that you can read by clicking here . One of the things John has jumped into helping us with is the structure of the organization. With some staff members moving on, several staff positions are opening up. We’ve been conducting preliminary interviews to find qualified candidates, but we welcome additional resumes. Please pass the word along to those in your districts who may be a good fit for the positions of Political Director and Finance Director. Job descriptions are attached.
Our staff has started to implement a Slack team as a communication and collaboration tool that enables us to leverage the help of dedicated volunteers. We love the increased input and resulting improved output. Our intention is to include the SREC as a part of our Slack team; look for invitations coming soon!
The RNC has already expressed their strong desire to support Texas during this next cycle. We have begun preparing the proposal to present to them by next month and are excited about what this will mean for our operation. The next RNC meeting is in August, and at the advice of RNC Chairwoman McDaniel, we will have several members of our staff join me for that meeting. We are forward to the opportunity to represent Texas to the RNC and bring back much needed resources to Keep Texas Red.
This past Tuesday we held our first special session Webinar, which was chock-full of relevant information for the grassroots’ engagement in the legislative process. Seventy listeners joined in, and many participated in the online Q&A. We appreciate Vice Chair Amy Clark & the legislative committee taking point on this.
We are working on getting the grassroots involved in sharing – and therefore significantly increasing the spread of – our social media messages via our new Message Amplifier team. We are also setting up a Rapid Response team to help us quickly learn about and prepare to address crises and opportunities as they respond. Look for messages from us in the future on ways to get your people involved in helping us with either or both of these teams.
We have had multiple County Chairs reach out to discuss best practices and the applicability of certain rules to specific conditions within their county. I am grateful for the invaluable assistance of our Parliamentarians in the rendering of appropriate rulings in those cases.
I had the opportunity to engage in TRCCA’s Board Meeting call on Monday evening and am very excited about the training and other programs they are doing in partnership with us. To RSVP for upcoming training sessions please click here.
Earlier this week the engagement staff came to RPT HQ to put a focus on how we can reach out to new voters and engage our entire state. As mentioned above, the most high-profile of those activities is the Juneteenth event in Houston on Monday, June 19th.
Asian Engagement Report:
● Engagement team met to discuss metrics, current efforts, and team-wide collaboration
● Outreach to minority faith leaders including planning for a legislative update for Pastors
● Recruited Asian American activists to attend upcoming Republican events in Dallas and
Hispanic Engagement Report:
This week in Hispanic Engagement focus was set on reports, working on events and community projects with coalition members. Met with community leaders to discuss long term projects that will help with new voter registration, more precinct chairs, and community clean-up projects in Hispanic communities. Met with the American Millennials to discuss 4 th of July event and completed all other training needs to help Harris County Millennials be successful in promoting and growing our party. I also traveled to Austin to meet with our new Chairman to discuss the future of engagement! It was a great week in Texas as we work hard to #keeptexasred
#Hispanicscare #hispanicsmatter #hispanicswillshowup because #weaintbackingdown!
South Texas Engagement Report:
● Planning of Joint Trainings with Bianca
● Hispanic & South Texas Follow ups
● Conclude RPT Leadership Update visits
● Cameron County Chairwoman & I spoke about the importance and concern about
continuous support for the RGV this weekend and the uprise of “BLUE” in the area. We
need leadership to continue visiting and supporting the Rio Grande Valley RPT must
show support in Brownsville.
● Fourth of July Flag give away in STX project
Black Engagement Report:
Discussion the RPT & IPEET expansion into Tyler, Texas
Meeting w/ New Recruit
Inspirational meeting to become more involved and serve as a surrogate
Meeting w/ Conservative Millennials
July 4 th Block Party Planning Committee meeting
Black owned non-profit KKA Camps
Discussion w/ Black Yale graduates on mutual policy issues
100 Black Men Inc.
Collaborative Black Engagement efforts
Juneteenth Planning Meeting w/ Generation One
Team meeting on agenda, format and experience
I hope you are as excited as I am about all the progress we’ve made in these first two weeks.
We obviously have much more left to do, and I hope to work with everyone who wants this Party
The number of quality people who want us to succeed and are offering their meaningful
assistance — like John Drogin, the Governor’s top staff, those in the White House Political
Office, the RNC, and so many more — is truly amazing and humbling.
To all of them, and to you, I can only say thank you, and God bless you. I can’t wait to see what
we accomplish together over the coming years.