UPDATE: After pressure, Gov. Greg Abbott has made a donation to the Republican Party of Texas Convention. It is currently unknown whether he will speak at the convention, or how large the donation is.
Gov. Greg Abbott appears positioned to skip the Republican Party of Texas Convention, as he has not yet accepted an invitation to sponsor the event or address the party’s grassroots, with the event just two weeks away.
Every election year, thousands of delegates at the Texas GOP convention vote on the party’s legislative priorities, tweak the party platform, and elect party leadership. Mixed into the business are speeches from statewide elected officials to inspire and rally the party base heading into the November election.
Traditionally, the event is financially sponsored in part by those same elected officials.
But according to the Republican Party of Texas, Abbott has so far declined to do either.
In response to an inquiry by The Texan, James Wesolek, a spokesman for the party, said, “To date, Governor Abbott has not accepted our invitation to sponsor the convention or address the delegates.”
According to a list of sponsors obtained by Texas Scorecard, the vast majority of other statewide Republican officials have contributed financially to the convention, including:
- Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick
- Comptroller Glenn Hegar
- Land Commissioner nominee Dawn Buckingham
- Attorney General Ken Paxton
- U.S. Sens. John Cornyn and Ted Cruz
- Railroad Commissioners Wayne Christian and Christi Craddick
- Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller
Several members of Congress and the state Legislature have donated, as well.
“I want to sincerely thank all of the public officials and companies who have sponsored our convention,” Texas GOP Chair Matt Rinaldi told Texas Scorecard. “Putting on the largest convention in the country is a huge financial undertaking, and it wouldn’t have been possible without their support.”
Abbott’s campaign maintains that he will be holding his own “welcome reception” instead.
The Republican Party of Texas Convention is slated to take place on June 16-18 in Houston.