February 2016 Newsletter
Not one vote has yet been cast in a presidential primary. Don’t let the press (or opinion polls) fool you. There are a total of 2,470 delegates that will decide our Republican presidential candidate, so 1,236 delegates are needed for a single candidate to win the nomination. Texas gets 155 total delegates. Here is a clear source for the number of delegates each state and territory gets and why (scroll down this website’s page for an interesting chart): http://www.thegreenpapers.com/P16/R-Alloc.phtml
I think it is fascinating that Puerto Rico gets more delegates than several states, but evidently they have more Republicans there. Some states hold “non-binding” caucuses or primaries where no delegates are awarded; they are just basically beauty pageants. Not sure why they bother. The RNC frowns upon that.
Iowa’s up first with a February 2 primary, followed by New Hampshire on February 9, and South Carolina and Nevada on February 23. Texas and eleven other states are next—holding our primaries on March 1.
Each state or territory determines its own delegate selection process. Texas, because we are awesome, awards our delegates to candidates based on our primary election results. In other words, each delegate is told who he or she will vote for at the Republican National Convention based on the votes cast in the delegate’s home congressional district (for at least the first round of voting). In a “brokered national convention” where no one candidate has the needed 1,236 delegates, the rules change and it becomes important which candidate each delegate personally supports.
Choosing those delegates begins with our primary election. In Texas, you are not a “Republican” until you vote in our primary. That vote declares your affiliation and allows you to engage in the rest of the Republican Party process. No one that votes in another party’s primary will be eligible to participate.
The next step in the delegate selection process is when all Texas Republicans meet in their senatorial district conventions on Saturday, March 19 (this date is uniform across the state, unlike the precinct conventions). At this convention, delegates will elect those who will represent them at the Texas GOP Convention and also will vote on Resolutions to be forwarded to the State Platform Committee. Watch your local County GOP website for the location in which your county/senatorial district convention will be held. Remember: You must be a voting delegate (elected from your Precinct Convention) to participate and vote at this convention or you will be treated as a guest.
The next step is our Texas GOP Convention which will be held in Dallas May 12-14. Put it on your calendar now. We need delegates, alternates (those elected at the county/senatorial district conventions), and volunteers to take part.
At the State Convention we will elect 3 delegates and 3 alternates from each of our 36 congressional districts to represent us at the Republican National Convention. The remainder of the delegate and alternate spots will be elected “at-large”—except for the 3 automatic delegate spots that go to our Texas Republican State Chairman, our Republican National Committeeman, and our Republican National Committeewoman. Texas will have a total of 155 delegates and 155 alternates to send to the Republican National Convention (second only to California’s 172). At our State Convention we will also adopt our 2016 Texas Republican Party Rules and Platform.
Finally, the Republican National Convention will be held in Cleveland, Ohio, on July 18-21, 2016. This is where delegates elect our presidential candidate and decide our National GOP Platform and Rules. The date of this convention has been moved up six weeks from the previously traditional September Republican National Conventions. This is in order to shorten the calendar gap between the primary campaigns and the funds that may be spent only by an officially nominated presidential campaign. By the way, the Democrats moved their convention up too—theirs will be held the following week in Philadelphia.
Tuesday, November 8, 2106 will be the day we have been waiting for! I want to encourage all of our VRW members to get involved, we need more Republican Women at the conventions steering this country back on track!