Former President Donald Trump has turned his eyes on Texas, endorsing a challenger to House Speaker Dade Phelan.

In a post on his social media platform Truth Social, Trump offered his support to former Orange County Republican Chairman David Covey.

“David Covey is running against Dade Phelan, the Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives, who led the Fraudulent Impeachment of the recently re-elected, in a landslide, Attorney General of Texas, Ken Paxton,” wrote Trump.
“David is an America First Conservative who will Secure the Border, Restore Election Integrity, Protect our Families and Military/Vets, and Defend our under siege Second Amendment.”

Trump then referenced a media interview done by Phelan last week, in which he stated he would vote for Trump in November, saying that his words “do not mitigate the Absolute Embarrassment Speaker Phelan inflicted upon the State of Texas and our Great Republican Party!”

Attorney General Ken Paxton, who has also endorsed Covey, praised Trump’s announcement.

“It’s time for HD 21 to fire Dade Phelan. According to the polling I have seen, sounds like its voters are ready to send him back home,” said Paxton.

A poll commissioned by Texans United for a Conservative Majority released Tuesday morning, showing Covey leading Phelan by 7 percent (35-28).

The same poll showed that 85 percent of Republican voters in Phelan’s district had a positive favorable of opinion of Trump, with 13 percent favorability.

Phelan, meanwhile, remains underwater in favorability, with 36 percent of those polled having a favorable opinion of him compared to 47 percent who view him unfavorably.

Covey said he was proud to have Trump’s endorsement, adding “America Last politicians like Dade Phelan are not welcome in the Republican Party of Texas.”

In a statement sent to media outlets, Phelan accused his political opponents of seeking the endorsement “in yet another attempt to get retribution against me for holding public officials accountable and defending the Texas House against outside interests.”

“I have voted for President Trump twice, and I plan on voting for him a third time. Trump himself has stated he does not know me nor does he know my record of fighting for Southeast Texans,” said Phelan.

The Republican primary election is on March 5. Early voting begins February 20.

Brandon Waltens

Brandon serves as the Senior Editor for Texas Scorecard. After managing successful campaigns for top conservative legislators and serving as a Chief of Staff in the Texas Capitol, Brandon moved outside the dome in order to shine a spotlight on conservative victories and establishment corruption in Austin. @bwaltens