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GOP To Select Party Chairman At Republican Convention

Ryan Poppe

It’s day one of the state Republican Party convention in San Antonio, and what do GOP delegates do on day one? They choose a state party chairman.

The contest for who will lead the party over the next two years has come down to two candidates: the incumbent chairman James Dickey, who was the former head of the Travis County Republican Party, and challenger Cindy Asche, a trauma nurse from North Texas.

Credit Ryan Poppe
James Dickey, current chair of the Republican Party of Texas

Dickey wants to build strong party unity through complete adherence to all of the ideals and planks that make up the party’s platform.

“When Gov. (Greg) Abbott called a special session last summer, we fought for every item that was in his call, that was on the platform,” Dickey said.

And that’s something Houston-area Republican state delegate Gene Mann said she is willing to support.

“Yeah, I don’t want to whittle away at our platform. That’s our values. That is what we stand for,” Mann said.

Dickey was the deciding vote on whether the state party executive committee should move forward on an effort to censure House Speaker Joe Straus for not supporting party platform legislation during the 2017 legislative session.

That legislation aimed to ban transgender bathrooms.

Asche does not believe there needs to be complete adherence to the party’s platform. She sees a need for the party to embrace Trump Republicans as just Republicans.

“We need full-time servant leadership that is dedicated to not only uniting the Republicans that has been with us for years but to making the thousands who voted for Trump not just guests at our party, but members of our family,” Asche said.

Credit Ryan Poppe
Cindy Asche is running in the Republican Party chairmanship race.

  Asche also wants to grow the party by reaching out to all Texans, especially minorities. That’s something that Fort Worth Republican delegate James Craig said he can support.


“She’s interested in minority outreach that was dissolved under James Dickey, and she believes that is important, and I believe that is important as well to grow the party in the state,” Craig said.


Republican delegates will cast their votes in the chairmanship race Friday morning.  


Ryan Poppe can be reached at rpoppe@tpr.org or on Twitter @RyanPoppe1