Allen West will be the next chairman of the Republican Party of Texas after delegates to the party’s convention voted overwhelmingly to replace incumbent Chairman James Dickey.
West is a retired U.S. Army lieutenant colonel and served a term in Congress, representing South Florida before moving to North Texas in 2014.
Dickey was originally selected by members of the State Republican Executive Committee to fill a vacancy after the resignation of former Chairman Tom Mechler, and won re-election in 2018 after an unsuccessful challenge from Cindy Crocker Asche.
West had campaigned on being a more active chairman of the Texas GOP as it relates to ensuring Republican lawmakers work to enact the party platform and legislative priorities into law. He also said he would fight to ensure Republican lawmakers stood up to their Democrat counterparts.
“It is time that the Republicans in Texas act like they’re in the majority, and not have Democrats as chairmen of very important committees that undermine our legislative priorities, like what we saw happen with constitutional carry, or even putting them on critical boards and commissions such as the Legislative Budget Board,” said West in a questionnaire provided by Texas Scorecard. “We need to act like we’re in the majority and respond to the grassroots and priorities of the people that elected Republicans to be where they are in the state of Texas.”
Originally slated to be held in Houston, the party was forced to go forward with a virtual convention after Democrat Mayor Sylvester Turner moved to cancel the party’s contract with the George R. Brown Convention Center.
The online convention, however, was plagued with technical problems from the start, as delegates were unable to receive their credentials to vote securely—a problem that was never completely resolved, leaving some longtime grassroots activists reportedly unable to participate in the process, and frustrating those that were.
Due to the delays, voting in Senate District caucuses began shortly after 11 p.m. and was ongoing in most districts into the early hours of the morning.
West declared victory in a Facebook post around 3:15 a.m.
The result was made official during a brief general session at noon on Monday, in which Dickey handed the gavel over to West and the two vowed to work together to strengthen the party ahead of the November election.