While there’s a lot to be said for Operation Chaos-esque tactics and raiding the other party’s primary for a temporary strategic gain (as state voting laws allow, anyway), here’s a strong argument for a little party loyalty this spring, courtesy of some Austin, Texas-area Republicans.
We get it. Sometimes there’s a race in the other party that’s appealing — when you want the more conservative Democrat (or Libertarian, or Green, or Constitutionalist, for that matter) to win. Or the least harmful one.
This kind of party-hopping is extremely tempting in the Austin area for Republicans. After all, Democrats maintain the same kind of numerical advantage over Republicans locally that Republicans enjoy statewide over them. In many cases, the winner of the Democratic Primary in the Austin area is presumed the winner of the general — though this is certainly not always the case, and local Republicans have made an art of upset victories.
This year in Travis County it’s especially tempting to jump ship during the primary, and for voters of both major parties.
For Democrats, they’re bored by the presumptive re-nomination of Joe Biden, and many are perfectly willing to switch over to the R primary and vote against Donald Trump by casting their vote for another presidential candidate. This new “Operation Chaos“-like tactic could have the effect of distorting many Republican races down ballot.
But on the other hand, Travis County Republicans are wanting to do everything they can do to stop Soros-supported District Attorney Jose Garza, a radical Leftist Democrat, from winning another term and gutting the law enforcement system even further than he has. Although Republicans have their champion in the form of Daniel Betts, he is unopposed on the R ballot. But Garza is opposed by Democrat Jeremy Sylestine on the D ballot, leaving Garza opponents wondering if voting for decidedly pro-law-enforcement Sylestine would make for an effective first line of defense before it’s Betts versus the Democratic nominee in November.
While it’s true the Presidential race is effectively already decided and there aren’t as many prize fights on this year’s Republican primary ballot as usual, here are some reasons why you should consider keeping your vote in the Grand Ol’ Party this Primary, courtesy of the Travis GOP’s blog:
1) We are the lasting alternative. There may be a candidate or two in the other party who promise a quick fix to a more systemic problem. But the only way to bring meaningful reform is by electing more conservative Republicans to offices up and down the ballot, and consistently. Your vote shows support strength for the party and its nominees, both present and future. In other words, the more primary voters we can recruit the better case we can make that Travis County is becoming redder.
2) Our statewide races need CONSERVATIVE votes. From U.S. Senate to statewide judicial candidates to Railroad Commissioner, we want conservatives making the decisions between candidates. If you’re reading this, you’re exactly the kind of informed voter we want making these important choices up ballot.
3) Our local races need CONSERVATIVE votes. Especially if you live in Texas House District 19 in western Travis County, you’ll want to weigh-in, as the winner of the primary is likely to be State Rep for the next two years. Check to see if there’s a contested Republican Primary race in your neighborhood here — even if it’s just a contested precinct chairman race. Even one vote could make all the difference, as it did in HD 47 in 2020. That one missing vote could be yours.
4) You can’t be a delegate if you don’t vote Republican! That means no precinct, no county/SD, and no state convention participation if you don’t vote Republican, and you’ll miss out on your chance to affect the drafting of the state platform, election of State Republican Executive Committee members, the state GOP Chairman and Vice Chairman, and other important decisions. While not everyone reading this is interested in being a delegate, we urge you to at least consider making your neighborhood Republican precinct convention on March 9 as big as possible with your attendance and enthusiastic participation!
5) Do you really want a big fat “D” on your voting record? Of course not! All partisan pride aside, this especially matters in campaign years, during which candidates will seek out consistent “super Republican” voters — not just for their votes, but also their insight and while seeking out strong Republicans to help out in campaign leadership and service roles. (Yes, the party primary you vote in is public record, even if your votes are secret!)
6) Eligibility to serve. If you want to serve the Republican Party or a conservative cause or organization in any way (such as being appointed as a Precinct Chairman) — even though you may have well-thought-out excuse for having voted in another primary in the past — you don’t want to have to do any ‘splaining! This really matters if you’re hoping to be a Republican candidate in the future. In some cases, a recent Democratic Primary vote or third party convention participation is automatically disqualifying.
7) The Golden Rule. “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” as Jesus famously said. Our state platform calls for a Closed Primary, but right now, Texas has an Open Primary. This means supporters of each party currently can jump ship and vote in the other party’s primary election. If we don’t want Democrats spoiling our primary races, then why would you want to do the same? Set the example for honesty this election.
Voting Republican this spring? Great! Here’s a great resource to help learn more about the candidates appearing on your ballot.
Early voting [in Texas] is from Feb. 20 through March 1, with Primary Election Day Tuesday, March 5, 2024.