Friday, February 24, 2012

Redistricting Update XI: It Is All Up To The Courts

If you are having trouble viewing this message, see it in your browser.

Redistricting Update XI: It Is All Up To The Courts

The fate of the redistricting maps now rests solely with the three-judge panel in San Antonio. As of the time of this update, a global agreement between all parties has not been reached relative to the Texas House and Texas Congressional districts. Therefore, the final decisions as to where the lines will be are in the hands of the three-judge panel. The panel set deadlines for parties to submit final briefs on various issues and that deadline has now passed. This now means that all the arguments are over and all we are waiting for now is for the Court to rule.

If the Court issues maps on or before March 3rd, then the May 29th primary date can be accomplished - assuming a re-opened filing period can be accomplished within a few days. If the Court issues new maps after March 3rd, then the next and final available primary date would be June 26th. To accomplish a June 26th primary, maps would still need to be issued by March 30th to meet the June 26th date.

There is a possibility that the San Antonio three-judge panel (which handles Section 2 challenges of the Voting Rights Act) will wait to see what the Washington D.C. three-judge panel (who handles Section 5 challenges of the Voting Rights Act) rules, and that subsequently, the San Antonio panel incorporates the D.C. panel's findings into new maps. The D.C. panel indicated that it would not rule prior to March. Consequently, if the San Antonio panel is waiting on the D.C. panel, a May 29th primary could only be accomplished if the D.C. panel rules at the very start of March and the rulings can be incorporated into alterations of the maps within a few days. Otherwise, only the June 26th primary date is an option.

If the San Antonio three-judge panel does not view it as a necessity to wait on the Washington D.C. panel, then we would expect to get new maps any day now.

As instructed by the San Antonio three-judge panel last week, the RPT's attorneys have been in contact with the Texas Democratic Party's attorneys to negotiate over proposed deadlines relative to a May 29th Primary Election and we are proceeding to plan as if we will have a May 29th Primary. RPT will provide you notice of any rulings as soon as practical.


Paid for by the Republican Party of Texas (
and not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee.

Contribution or gifts are not tax deductible for Federal income tax purposes.


Thursday, February 23, 2012

Primary election

Hello everyone,
Are you confused about the Texas Primary season?  Believe me you aren't alone.  There has even been some speculation about missing it all together.  However, here is the latest.
The San Antonio panel has moved passed the possibility of having anything in April.  Now the date that is in focus is May 29, but that is only about 75% accurate. There is some talk about June also.
This whole mess is being caused by the 1965 Voting Rights Act, which I believe Texas should have been removed from needing to comply with years ago.  Now it is being used to punish us, and I sincerely believe the intention is to not allow Texas to have any 'say' in the Republican Presidential choice.  Bottom line is we can't have an election until we have maps that define where the precincts and districts are.  The 4 new Congressional Districts are the biggest issue.
Not only is the Primary being effected , but also effects the possible dates for a Runoff.  In addition there are some very serious consequences to the entire Republican Convention process from Precincts to the National convention and the election of delegates.
Keeping all this in mind, I will keep you up to date as I get information.
Sue Evenwel

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Flower news

The Titus County Republican Party made a decision to try a fundraising project.  It is called Flower Power, an online and face-to-face flower sale.  The Titus County Republicans will receive 50% of the sales. 
Yesterday I put your email addresses and names into the system for being part of the fundraising team.  Let me know when you get an email from them.  You will be asked to put emails and names of your friends into your list, and then the Flower Power company will help you market the project.
I am thrilled to let you all know when I looked at the site this morning, we have had our first sale from someone I don't even know!
Call me or email me if you have questions.  Thank you for helping.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

URGENT Redistricting Update X: Primary Moved Again


Urgent Redistricting Update X: Primary Moved Again

This afternoon, the San Antonio three-judge panel indicated that the April unified primary election will be postponed and that it was probable (but not a certainty) that the new primary date will be May 29th. As previously reported, on Tuesday, county clerks and elections administrators testified that they need 88 days of lead time to prepare for a primary election from the date that new district maps are issued. Today at the hearing, the Texas Secretary of State's office indicated that this timeline could be shrunk to 77 days and reduced even further if military ballots were accepted for a short period of time after the primary. Consequently, new maps need to be in place sometime between early and mid-March in order to maintain the May 29th primary date.

Chairman Munisteri discussed with the Court the problems a May 29th primary creates for the party's delegate selection process for the RPT State Convention. He reiterated that it is impossible to comply with the current Texas Election Code as it pertains to delegate selection, with the primary on May 29th and the State Convention in the first week of June. He strongly urged the Court to issue an order that would allow the State Republican Executive Committee to adopt a new delegate selection process which varies from the Election Code. He told the court that if there is sufficient time for planning, that in consultation with party leadership, he had several different options in mind which: would allow district conventions to still occur on schedule, allow for a May 29th primary, and still allow for a convention the next week. In general terms, he suggested different options which would completely de-couple the selection of delegates to the State Convention from the primary election.

The Court indicated it was very likely that they would grant such a request from the State Party, provided it received U.S. Department of Justice pre-clearance. Chairman Munisteri made the case that DOJ pre-clearance is not required in a case where the changes are made as a result of court order. However, the Court indicated that they thought it was a safer route to obtain pre-clearance. A Department of Justice attorney testified that his office would expedite such a request and anticipated that the approval time could be reduced from a couple of months to a couple of weeks, thereby allowing the change to occur.

The Court instructed both political parties to consult on a new schedule for a May 29th primary. It also invited the state parties to put forth separate proposals as to how they would select delegates and conduct their conventions. Chairman Munisteri is hoping to hold a telephone conference with members of the Republican Party of Texas Officials Committee tomorrow to go over various options. He plans within the next few days, to have a separate telephone conference with the entire SREC to go over recommendations from the Officials Committee. It is his hope that a consensus plan can be agreed upon by the SREC. If this is accomplished, he will distribute this plan to all County Chairmen to obtain their input, and then once a final plan is agreed upon - to propose the plan to the three-judge panel in San Antonio.

It is the Chairman's goal to develop a process around existing Senatorial and County conventions so as to minimize inconvenience and logistical problems. It remains his objective to keep the State Republican Convention scheduled as planned during the first week of June. We will provide further information over the next few days as to developments in this regard.

Also on Wednesday - Chairman Munisteri, RPT lawyers and staff spent another day in the courtroom listening to final arguments in the redistricting case. It appears as though there is an agreement between the Attorney General and the Democrats on a new Texas State Senate map. As soon as we have full details, we will provide them to you - but it is expected that the final lines will make it possible for a Republican to win the district in controversy, SD 10, although not a certainty.

At the time the hearing concluded, General Abbott's team had not reached agreement with all the plaintiffs on all districts pertaining to the Texas House map. With one set of plaintiffs, there is still a battle over Republican districts HD 144 (currently held by Ken Legler), HD 117 (currently held by John Garza) and HD 81 (currently held by Tryon Lewis). Another set of plaintiffs wanted to change the lines of another 30 districts on the State House map in an even larger grab for seats.

With regards to the Congressional districts (discussion of which took up most of the day) the prime battleground appears to be over CD 33, 25, 23, 35 and 27. Of particular concern to the Republican Party of Texas is CD23, which is represented by Congressman Quico Canseco. General Abbott's map is roughly equivalent to how that district was configured before redistricting, while the Democrats are pushing for an increase of Democrat voters there.

There was also a big argument with the Democrats over CD 25, currently represented by Lloyd Doggett. Travis County and other Democratic plaintiffs are arguing that the district should not be converted to a Republican district, since in their opinion the district is protected under the Voting Rights Act - General Abbott's team disputes this. There are also several different proposals regarding Congressional District 33 in Arlington. Additionally, Congressman Joe Barton's legal team (led by former State Representative Joe Nixon) argues that the configuration of that district in the Attorney General's compromise proposal is not allowable under current legal standard. At the end of the hearing today, there was also no agreement on the Texas Congressional map.

Chairman Munisteri issued the following statement regarding today's proceedings. "I am disappointed that the San Antonio three-judge panel again delayed the Texas Primary Election. The Secretary of State's witness today indicated that if the panel would issue maps within the next few days - that an April 24th primary could still be accomplished. However, now that it is apparent that April is out, the RPT will continue to fight to oppose any further slippage in the primary schedule. We will work hard with our Party leadership to come up with a plan to preserve our State convention."

At this juncture, it appears that there will not be an agreement between all parties regarding all districts. Therefore, at this time, it appears that the three-judge panel will have to decide where the final lines are for the Texas House and Congressional districts.

Special Advisory to all Republican county chairmen, precinct chairmen, and party activists from Chairman Munisteri - I am hopeful that the SREC will come up with a plan for the three-judge panel that will still allow district conventions on the date scheduled. Therefore it is our advice that you not cancel your plans to go forward with district conventions until otherwise instructed. I am hopeful that within the next week or so, that we will have a telephone conference with all county chairs to provide them more information on any proposed plans. The RPT is committed to working with each of you to come up with a workable solution to this unprecedented challenge. Thank you again for your patience and hard work.



Presidents' Day Candidate Forum

 "Diamonds and Denim"
February 20, 2012
Hopkins County Regional Civic Center
Doors Open 5:30 pm---Dinner Served 6:00 pm
Catered by Big Smith Bar-b-que
Cost:  $10.00 per person    Western Dress/Causal
Live & Silent Auction !!!
Keynote Speaker:  State "GOP" Chairman Steve Munisteri
Music by Senator Bob Deuell  & Bois d' Arc Band
*Congressman Ralph Hall     * Craig James
        *Sen. Bob Deuell * Bob Hall   *Rep Dan Flynn                          *      *George Alexander       *Eddie Northcutt,
        *Rep Erwin Cain          *Will Biard
        *Will Ramsey     *Comm Beth Wisenbaker
        *Danny Christenberry       *Wade Bartley
*Norman Colyer * Bill Allan   *John Beadle
Will raffle a 20 Ga. Shotgun…$5.00 per ticket


Donnie Wisenbaker
Hopkins County GOP
PO Box 1002
Sulphur Springs, TX 75483


Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Redistricting Update VI: New Maps Proposed


Redistricting Update VI: New Maps Proposed
Unified April Primary Still Possible


AUSTIN - On Monday afternoon, Attorney General Greg Abbott announced an agreement with some of the plaintiffs to the Texas redistricting lawsuit. In a released statement on Monday, the Attorney General indicated support from a significant number of plaintiffs' groups, including: Texas LULAC, MALDEF, GI Forum, The Mexican American Bar Association of Texas, La Fe Policy Research and Education Center, Hispanics Organized for Political Education (HOPE), the National Organization for Mexican American Rights, Southwest Voter Registration Education Project, the William C. Velasquez Institute, Southwest Workers' Union, and other plaintiffs collectively known as the "Texas Latino Redistricting Task Force." With respect to the U.S. Congress, the Attorney General was also able to reach an agreement with Democratic Congressman Henry Cuellar.

The Attorney General has posted the proposed maps online which are agreed to by these plaintiffs. The Republican Party of Texas has been closely analyzing these proposed lines. If the court agrees to enact these interim maps, the proposal should enable the Republican Party to have an excellent chance at preserving all of the Congressional seats we won in 2010, and would also provide a very strong chance at picking up an additional couple of Congressional seats from the four Texas has gained through reapportionment. This is an improvement over the maps originally issued by the San Antonio three-judge panel. Under those maps, there was a possibility that the Republican Party would not win any of the new four seats, and Republicans also faced a possibility of losing one or two of our existing incumbents.

In regards to proposed maps for the Texas House of Representatives, the proposal preserves the ability of the Republican Party to achieve a solid majority in that body. RPT staff has analyzed the maps over the past few hours and believe that there will be 96 State House districts with an average GOP vote of 50% or better (using vote totals for the 2008 Presidential Election.) Thus, the new proposed maps represent an improvement over the court-issued maps, with fewer Republican seats at risk than the lines drawn by the San Antonio three-judge panel last year.

On the State Senate side, there is really only one district in dispute - that being SD 10 with Democratic Senator Wendy Davis. A trial is already scheduled this week on that district, so hopefully the court will be in a position to issue a ruling early next week and issue a new State Senate map in time for there to be a single unified primary in April.

While these are only proposed maps at the present time, the filing of them greatly increases the chances that there will still be a single unified primary in mid-April. It is the Republican Party of Texas' position that even if maps are not agreed to by all parties, that the Court now has sufficient information as to the  respective positions of all parties so as to allow the Court to issue final maps in time for a single unified primary in mid-April. The RPT filed an advisory this morning to this effect, a copy of which is linked here.

Republican Party of Texas Chairman Steve Munisteri issued the following statement, relative to these developments. "I believe these lines are a substantial improvement overall when compared to the maps initially released by the San Antonio three-judge panel overseeing redistricting. These proposed maps do have some substantial differences from the originally drawn legislative maps. The unanimous Supreme Court ruling in January stated that the legislative maps (prior to preclearance) and the San Antonio three-judge panel maps were both unable to be used in the 2012 Texas primary, but the Supreme Court also said that the legislative maps needed to be a starting point. As the Attorney General announced today, this agreement complies with the Supreme Court's criteria, while at the same time preserving the opportunity for Republicans to make gains in the Congressional delegation and to preserve our solid majority in the State Legislature."

Munisteri continued, "I am hopeful that the San Antonio three-judge panel will rule in a timely fashion on these new proposed maps, so that our candidates can have certainty and so that we can move forward with a unified primary. I am particularly hopeful that we can still have a Presidential primary prior to any candidates obtaining a majority of delegates necessary for nomination, and that Texas can still have a significant voice in the Republican Presidential primary process.

Advisory to all Republican county chairmen, precinct chairmen, and party activists - It appears as though today's developments make it unlikely that there will be an April 3rd Primary. However, it is increasingly likely that there will be a single unified primary in mid-April. If the three-judge panel acts swiftly on these new proposed maps, it is still possible for an April unified primary to occur. Therefore, we recommend you still make preliminary preparations for a primary sometime in the second or third week of April. We still cannot definitively tell you when the primary will occur, but we expect there to be additional announcements within the next week, so please be on the lookout for additional emails and leadership advisories.