People holding signs for Steve MunisteriFriday (day 2) started off early with the Senatorial district caucus meetings. In general session #2 there were also speeches by Senator Kay Baliey Hutchison, Senator John Cornyn, and Texas Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst. Senator Hutchison is retiring from her career in the Senate, and was greeted with much applause. However, when she began speaking, she repeatedly referred to Mitt Romney as the party nominee and sang his praises, so-to-speak, to the loud dissent of (presumed) Ron Paul supporters. May I take the time to remind the readers that currently the Republican party does not have a presidential nominee. Granted, Mitt Romney is and has been the leader in both popular vote and delegate count, but he is not the nominee. The nominee is not chosen until August in Tampa, Florida when the RNC meets to vote on that matter. That aside, Kay Bailey Hutchison has served the state of Texas in the U. S. Senate since 1991 and was the first woman to be elected to the Senate from the state of Texas.

After the speeches, the meeting was called to order. Reports were given from the permanent credentials committee, the agenda and supplemental rules were adopted, and reports were given from the permanent organization committee and permanent state nominating committee.Texas State GOP Chairman Steve Munisteri

Following that, we, the Liberty Live Stream Team, continued conducting interviews. Unfortunately this time it was not without incident. We had been “borrowing,” admittedly without asking anyone, an unused kiosk. A grassroots club had rented the kiosk, but had not been using it since the first morning of the convention. As long as it was vacant we used it as a desk. When a representative of the club approached us, she asked if she could help, explaining that she was from the organization. We told her that if she needed us to move we would do so, and she said she would ask someone, walking away while she made a phone call. I never saw her again, but about five minutes later an employee of the Fort Worth Convention Center approached us quite boldly, telling us to move. His tone was hostile, but we calmly collected our things, explaining that we would move and provided no argument. It was a little nerve wracking, but we moved over to another hallway which was carpeted and actually provided better acoustics for conducting interviews.

All of the interviews have been recorded and are available on Ustream for anyone who cares to watch them. They consist of supporters both of Mitt Romney and Ron Paul. Each was asked why he or she supported their candidate and other questions. One question that was asked frequently to the Romney supporters was, “What significant difference in policy is there between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney?” The answers to this question from delegates were quite interesting.

Lunch Break

First President of the United StatesDuring our lunch hour, we encountered a very rare sight. General/President George Washington himself showed up for an interview! Well, not the one you probably thought of right at first. This was an actor who gave a speech at one point in the convention. When we found him for an interview, he gave us his views on the nation today, Barack Obama, and more.

At 2:00 PM, the third general session began, starting with more speeches and presentations of state officials. The business of this session included a report from the permanent rules committee. There were several amendments presented and debated upon concerning this report. The convention chairman, Steve Munisteri, conducted this portion well, explaining to those unfamiliar with the rules of order how to state points of order, make motions, etc. The rules report was not adopted with all its amendments in time for a 5:00 PM adjournment which had to take place in order to allow for dinners and other activities scheduled in advance to take place. Among others, a dinner with former Senator and Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum was held. I originally planned to attend this, but the fee was $200 to get in, so I decided to use my funds elsewhere.

Fortunately, unlike in the Oklahoma convention, arrangements had been made to finish the business of the day after evening events by reconvening in the convention hall at 9:00 PM. This took place where the rules report was adopted as well as the platform. I found out later that this cost the party extra money because they only rented the room initially until 5. It was rather refreshing that the Texas GOP had the foresight to plan for this after having attended the Oklahoma convention where when business was not finished by 5, it was delegated to an executive committee to make decisions without the consent or involvement of the convention.

The delegates each paid their own way travel to the conventions, and they also paid to attend them. In Oklahoma, their efforts were marginalized, but in Texas they were honored. Oklahoma should learn many lessons from the way the Texas convention was conducted, and perhaps in the coming years the OK GOP can reflect some of the better aspects of Texas.