From The Texas Newsroom:
The Texas Democratic Party is kicking off its biennial convention Thursday in Dallas, and party leaders say they hope the event will help build additional momentum to make gains in the November midterm elections.
Rep. Gilberto Hinojosa, the chairman of the Texas Democratic Party, told The Texas Newsroom the meetup will show Texans what his organization cares about — access to education, inclusion, gun safety, and access to reproductive health.
“These are critical issues that it’s important for us to make sure that Texans understand that we’re fighting for them,” Hinojosa said. “The Republican Party, contrary to what they tell you they’re going to do, always are working against them because they’re more concerned with cultural issues, than bread and butter issues.”
Thousands of Democrats are expected to flood the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center to hear speeches, get trained on running for office and campaigns, and adopt the party’s new platform.
Delegates will also elect the state chair of the party. Hinojosa is running for re-election against retired Air Force Colonel Kim Olson, and Carroll Robinson, chairman of the Texas Coalition of Black Democrats.
The convention is taking place as statewide polling shows Beto O’Rourke, the Democrat running for governor, closing the gap between him and incumbent Republican Gov. Greg Abbott.
An online survey released Wednesday conducted by the University of Houston shows that 49 percent of likely voters say they would support Abbott. Forty-four percent said they would vote for O’Rourke.
Other recent statewide polls show a similar trend.
“The momentum is there … but it’s a momentum that is being sustained,” Hinojosa said. “The momentum is being created also by these far extreme policies that the Republican Party is pushing upon the people in the state.”
O’Rourke is scheduled to give a keynote speech on Friday night.
Other speakers include members of the Texas Democratic congressional delegation and Democratic National Committee Chairman Jaime Harrison.