San Antonio, Texas—June 21, 2018: Last week, thousands of political activists attended the Republican Party of Texas (RPT) State Convention in San Antonio, Texas. For Pro-Life Texans, the semiannual convention is a time to reaffirm the Pro-Life party platform and strategize on the next legislative steps to advance the Culture of Life in our state.
Leading up to the convention, Texas Right to Life recruited Pro-Life Texans to become delegates to the convention and urge their local Republican leaders to support Pro-Life candidates and resolutions. Specifically, Texas Right to Life campaigned for the re-election of James Dickey as RPT chairman, the election Pro-Life champions to the State Republican Executive Committee, and several critical resolutions to advance the Pro-Life cause.
At the State Convention, Texas Right to Life joined the grassroots movement in calling for the adoption of two critical Pro-Life initiatives: adding the Preborn NonDiscrimination Act (PreNDA) to the Platform as well as endorsing the policy as a legislative priority and adding explicit language in the platform calling on the legislature to repeal the draconian “Ten Day Law” in the Texas Advance Directives Act (TADA). The party’s endorsement of PreNDA in the legislative priority list will greatly help Pro-Life champions in the Texas Legislature in the upcoming session. Additionally, the Platform Committee and the Republican delegates adopted stronger language in the platform calling for the anti-Life “Ten Day Law” to be repealed, an effort that remains a priority for Texas Right to Life and Pro-Life Texans.
Pro-Life legislation has been featured prominently in previous conventions. The Dismemberment Abortion Ban was the most widely supported Pro-Life policy platform plank for the RPT in 2016. Despite relentless opposition in Austin, the Dismemberment Abortion Ban eventually did pass in the 85th Session of the Texas Legislature in no small part due to the committed grassroots support for this life-saving measure.
In a state where Republicans command a strong majority, advancing Pro-Life legislation is possible but keeping elected officials accountable to the party platform and their constituents is crucial. Texans have signaled that they do not want the moderate status quo to continue under the Pink Dome. The Republican Party of Texas is the only major political party that includes the protection of all innocent human Life as a central tenet. Texas Right to Life is thankful that the Republican delegates ensured the party’s leadership, platform, and legislative priorities reflect this Pro-Life ethic.