Texas GOP votes unanimously for a new national leader after disappointing midterms
RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel speaking at the 2018 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in National Harbor, Maryland. Photo by Gage Skidmore.

Frustrated with the outcome of the midterm elections, the executive committee of the Texas GOP voted unanimously Saturday to call for new leadership at the national party.

By a vote of 62-0, the State Republican Executive Committee passed a resolution saying it had lost confidence in the chair of the Republican National Committee, Ronna McDaniel. The resolution said she “must be replaced” but did not endorse a challenger.

“Under Chairwoman McDaniel’s leadership, the GOP lost both houses of Congress and the White House, and seriously underperformed in 2022 by further losing ground in the Senate and only barely winning a majority in the House,” the resolution said, adding that new leadership is necessary to “address deficiencies in fundraising, messaging, GOTV and election integrity.”

The resolution puts the state party on the front lines of those agitating for a new RNC chair after the Nov. 8 election. Texas GOP chair Matt Rinaldi had already endorsed a potential challenger to McDaniel, New York U.S. Rep. Lee Zeldin, though Zeldin announced last week that he would not run.

Texas Republicans generally had a good election, defending all statewide offices by decisive margins. But SREC members cited disappointment with the results nationwide as Republicans captured the House majority by a smaller-than-expected margin and failed to flip the Senate.

Texas Republicans get three votes when the 168-member RNC meets next month for its chair election: Rinaldi, the state party chair; Toni Anne Dashiell, the state’s Republican National Committeewoman; and Robin Armstrong, the state’s Republican National Committeeman. Dashiell is one of 101 RNC members who have already backed McDaniel for reelection, more than enough to win another term.

More opposition has emerged since then, including California RNC member Harmeet Dhillon and MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell.

McDaniel has kept the RNC aligned with former President Donald Trump, who some Republicans have blamed for the party’s underwhelming performance in the midterms. While the Texas GOP has generally embraced Trump — Rinaldi said in January they were the “bold party of Donald Trump” — the executive committee did not offer any commentary Saturday on his role in the midterms.

The anti-McDaniel resolution was offered by Rolando Garcia, an SREC member from Houston, and it generated a short discussion before the unanimous approval. Garcia said “anyone with a pulse would be better than” McDaniel.

“The issue is, why was it that we only had a trickle in the House and we lost control of the Senate, or at least 50-50 in the Senate?” said Francisco “Quico” Canseco, a former congressman from San Antonio who serves on the SREC. “Something is desperately wrong when we cannot energize the American public when the issues are so, so strong.”

Rinaldi acknowledged that he had publicly backed Zeldin but did not say who he would support now that Zeldin has declined to run. He estimated he has received as many as 1,500 emails related to the RNC chair race and said all but one support new leadership.