Houston Cancels Texas GOP Convention

Steven Pickering
July 08, 2020 - 4:25 pm

    DALLAS (KRLD) - The Mayor of Houston has canceled the Republican Party of Texas convention that had been scheduled for the city's  George R. Brown Convention Center from July 16th through July 18th. Mayor Sylvester Turner says he's concerned the event could promote the spread of COVID-19.

    "I have instructed HFC - the Houston First Corporation - to exercise its contractual right to cancel the state Republican Party convention due to the pandemic," Mayor Turner said.

    He had previously urged the party to move to a virtual convention but had stopped short of using his authority to block the group from meeting in Houston.

    "No one wanted to make this to even appear to be political," Mayor Turner said. "This is a political convention, and the last thing you want to do in the midst of a pandemic is to politicize it or to make it seem as though you're going out of your way to close the door."

    The event was expected to draw about six-thousand people to Houston. "We shut down the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo," Mayor Turner said, "and this event is no greater and no better."

    The Republican Party of Texas had issued a statement ahead of Mayor Turner's announcement to address comments he mad during Wednesday morning's Houston City Council meeting, where he pledged to do all he could to cancel the convention.

    "After allowing tens of thousands of protestors to peaceably assemble in the same city, in the same area, without any of the safety precautions and measures we have taken, he is seeking to deny a political Party’s critical electoral function that should be equally protected under the constitution," said RPT Chairman James Dickey. “Our legal team is assessing the ability of the City to act at this time in this manner and weighing our legal options. "We are prepared to take all necessary steps to proceed in the peaceable exercise of our constitutionally protected rights."