Amid rumors Democrat officials might cancel next month’s Republican Party of Texas convention in Houston due to the Chinese coronavirus, a North Texas county official is offering his GOP stronghold as an alternative.
“In the event that this rumor is true, I would certainly welcome the Convention to Collin County,” Commissioner Darrell Hale, a Republican, posted Friday on Facebook.
The RPT’s 2020 convention is currently scheduled to be held July 16-18 at the George R. Brown Convention Center in downtown Houston. City and county offices there are dominated by Democrats.
“Collin County is open and welcoming to our statewide conservative colleagues and delegates,” Hale said:
“If it gets shut down in Houston, we have business to be taken care of and we can do that in conservative Collin County. I would welcome the Convention personally to Precinct 3.
“We have 25+ Republican Clubs that I am sure could come together to execute on an undertaking in short order so we can hear from our leadership. Plus, who wants to go to a Democratic Humid Houston if we aren’t wanted?”
Every partisan elected office in Collin County is held by a Republican.
But not every resident is a fan of inviting thousands of potential coronavirus carriers to the county.
At one-fifth the population of Harris County, where Houston is located, Collin County has had only a tenth of the cases—about 2,700; 413 are currently active.
Harris, the largest county in Texas with over 4 million residents, has had the highest number of COVID-19 cases in the state—over 29,000—and currently has almost 18,000 active cases.
Last Monday, Harris County officials imposed a mask mandate on businesses. But RPT Chairman James Dickey said on Wednesday that masks would be optional for convention attendees.
The Texas GOP has not responded to Texas Scorecard for comment as to whether they would consider relocating the convention to a Republican-led area.