Confusion and misinformation continues to be spread about the Ector County Republican Party and the role and duties of local precinct chairs.  In an effort to set the record straight I would like to respond to the many false narratives filling social media.

Basically, the role of local precinct chairs is to inform, mobilize, and assist voters in Ector County.  Precinct chairs serve as the steering wheel of the local Republican Party.  Every two years, local voters elect precinct chairs for their precinct.  If a vacancy occurs mid term then the other precinct chairs appoint a precinct chair to complete the uncompleted term. While the County Chair can vote like other precinct chairs, generally the responsibilities of the chair in this process are merely to maintain order and record the vote of the precinct chairs.

Currently, there are no appointed precinct chairs as every current precinct chair stood for election and was voted in during the March 2022 elections.

The work done by the volunteer, unpaid precinct chairs is very important to the success of the party on a local, state, and even on the national level.  Think of a precinct like you would a neighborhood.  The precinct chairs’ job in each precinct or neighborhood is to Identify, register and inform voters and to encourage them to vote in each and every election.

Precinct chairs use data obtained from the local elections office to get to know Republicans in the neighborhood and organize voters at election time to help support Republican candidates.  Precinct chairs also educate our neighborhood voters and provide opportunities to become more involved with the Republican Party.

 On the local party level Precinct chairs participate in Convention, County Executive Committee Meetings, recruit precinct chairs to fill vacant seats and organize volunteers.   One of the most time consuming tasks that we do is knocking doors for candidates.  

Additionally, the local Republican Party hosts the annual “Back The Blue” pancake breakfast to raise funds for local law enforcement and the annual Lincoln Day Dinner where top, national level speakers are the keynote speakers.  

Once early voting begins Republican precinct chairs fill the ranks as poll workers, poll watchers, and election judges.  Also, precinct chairs provide transportation to the polls to those who are unable to get to a voting location on their own.

Overall, precinct chairs and our Republican county chair are busy throughout the year promoting the Republican values of civic engagement and limited, conservative government.

Locally, it seems, local precinct chairs have come under attack by Democrat operatives who have chastised, berated, and harangued precinct chairs for the other two critical functions they perform.  Firstly, Texas law requires that at least two precinct chairs sign a petition to allow anyone to run for local party chair.  This law was enacted after local Democrats in a county conspired together to take over a local Republican party by crossing over in a primary to elect a Republican county chair.  

In addition to the obvious problems of such subversive activity, the County Chair position is not just a ceremonial role.  County Chairs must be an expert on election laws and rules and are responsible for overseeing elections, candidate filings, and the legal qualifications for local office holders who choose to run for office on a Republican ballot.  

The second “controversial” role undertaken by precinct chairs is the endorsement of candidates for offices.  The precinct chairs will sometimes vote to endorse one candidate over another.  These endorsements come after much debate and discussion and the Ector County Republican Party doesn’t always endorse a candidate for a race.  In the end, endorsement is taken very seriously and seeks to inform voters of the reason why one candidate exemplifies the conservative principles that our party platform espouses over the other.  Contrary to the false rhetoric being espoused by local Democrat operatives, the endorsement of local candidates has been encouraged by the Republican Party of Texas and our chair Matt Rinaldi.

I’m proud of the fact that the Ector County Republican Party is one of the most active and influential county parties in Texas.   My hope is that our local Republican party will continue to strive to make a difference in our county and will continue to promote the solid, conservative principles laid out in our platform.

Tim Harry
Precinct 110 Chair
Ector County Republican Party