Mere days after Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton was acquitted of the House’s impeachment charges, two county GOP’s are supporting the censure of Republican House Speaker Dade Phelan. 

On Monday, the Harris County GOP and Dallas County GOP both voted to support a resolution passed by the Orange County GOP in July to censure Phelan, citing his many failures and “abuse of power.” 

“State Representative Dade Phelan, as Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives, has abused the power of his office and his authority as Speaker by taking more than three actions during this current biennium that are either in opposition to the core principles of the Republican Party of Texas, in opposition to the Republican Party of Texas Legislative Priorities, or both,” read Harris County GOP’s resolution.

Harris County GOP’s resolution directed its attention at Phelan’s appointment of nine Democrats to committee chair positions. They claim that his ‘conscious decision’ to appoint multiple Democrat chairs places Phelan in violation of the first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, eighth, and ninth core principles of the RPT 2022 platform. 

Moreover, Phelan appointed pro-abortion Democrat State Rep. Joe Moody of El Paso, who chaired the House Criminal Jurisprudence Committee. The committee was assigned House Bill 2709, which would have abolished abortion in Texas. The resolution claims that because Phelan appointed a Democrat to head that committee, he ensured that legislation would never receive a hearing and die in committee.

Dallas County’s resolution took aim at multiple instances where Phelan violated RPT’s legislative priorities, including allowing House Bill 20, a crucial border security measure, to die in the House and refusing to comment in support of RPT Legislative Priority 8—Parental Rights and Educational Freedom. They also focused on Phelan’s promotion of advocacy organizations that oppose traditional marriage and advocate against banning gender mutilation of children—priority 3.

Additionally, they directed attention to the ‘sham impeachment of AG Paxton,’ claiming Phelan colluded with House Democrats to rush an impeachment without legal evidence. 

“With many county Censures of Speaker Phelan, conservative, grassroots Republican voters who typically ‘don’t pay attention’ will see that Speaker Phelan consistently colludes with Democrats to defy our Republican Party legislative priorities and party values,” read Dallas County GOP’s resolution. 

Harris County GOP Chairman Cindy Siegel said she fully supports the decision to censure Phelan.

“The growing number of county parties across Texas voicing their displeasure with Speaker Phelan should not be taken with a grain of salt. The voting members of these parties, like our own, are the Grassroots—They’re the backbone and the beating heart of the Republican party,” said Siegel.

They also requested the State Republican Executive Committee concur with the Orange County Republican Party resolution and impose upon Phelan all of the consequences of censure. The SREC is slated to meet this weekend.

Emily Medeiros

Emily graduated from the University of Oklahoma majoring in Journalism. She is excited to use her research and writing skills to report on important issues around Texas.