A poll conducted during the Republican Party of Texas Convention earlier this month reports that more than 60 percent of delegates in attendance disapprove of U.S. Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX).

Every two years, thousands of delegates from across the state meet at the Texas GOP convention to vote on new legislative priorities, hold elections for party leadership positions, and adjust the party’s platform.

At this year’s convention, the Republican Party of Texas joined with a research and analytics group to “conduct a straw poll of the delegates discussing pressing issues and future elections.” The poll gave more than 2,700 delegates 24 hours to respond to the questions via text messaging.

Sixty-seven percent of delegates reported an unfavorable opinion of Cornyn, while 16 percent voiced their support for the senator.

Cornyn recently came under fire for joining Democrat lawmakers in crafting legislation to expand gun control regulations. The proposed legislation would encourage states to implement “red flag laws” in addition to upping the age restrictions on gun ownership.

At the GOP convention, the party’s Platform Committee passed a resolution condemning Cornyn’s gun control compromise. The resolution criticized several elements of Cornyn’s proposed legislation and referred to red flag laws as “a pre-crime punishment of people not adjudicated guilty.” Later at the event, Cornyn was booed by delegates while trying to deliver a speech.

In contrast, 51 percent of delegates reported a favorable opinion on Gov. Greg Abbott. However, 32 percent said they had an unfavorable opinion of the governor, and 17 percent stated they were unsure about his performance.

Abbott, however, did not make an official appearance at the GOP convention, opting instead to host a separate gathering for supporters and make a last-minute donation to the event.

Also included in the poll was a question asking delegates which candidate they would favor in the 2024 Republican presidential primary. The poll featured 11 potential candidates, including former President Donald Trump, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), and Gov. Greg Abbott.

Of the delegates polled, 54 percent selected Trump as their favored 2024 Republican nominee for president. DeSantis came in second with 30 percent of the vote, and Cruz fell into the third-place slot with 4 percent.

In another edition of the Republican presidential primary poll that excluded Trump from consideration, DeSantis received 71 percent of the vote. From there, the percentages earned drastically decreased, with Cruz taking 9 percent and U.S. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) in third place with 3 percent of the vote.

Although most delegates reported a favorable opinion of Abbott, he only received 1 percent of the vote in both versions of a hypothetical Republican presidential primary poll.

Abbott’s low ranking in the poll and Cornyn’s loss of popularity among GOP delegates shows that Texas politicians will have to work to maintain support among their conservative constituents.

Katy Drollinger

Katy is eager to use her skills in writing and research to accurately report on issues for Texas Scorecard. She graduated from Tarleton State University in 2021 after majoring in history and minoring in political science.

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