El Paso County’s Republican Party: Gaining a Foothold?
By Joe Olvera ©, 2010
The El Paso County Republican Party may not be the majority political party in El Paso, but, newly elected Chairman, Tom Holmsley, said he’s never giving up. “Our main objective is to get more conservatives elected, and that includes more Hispanics,” Holmsley said. “Hispanics are helping us to become stronger. They are becoming Republicans because they feel good about themselves. Being Liberal is not paying off.”
Holmsley, who replaced Michael Moore in a election last May, said that Hispanics are becoming more aware of the conservative philosophy. He said Arizona’s new law, SB 1070 – which will require police officers to act as immigration agents – will not play in El Paso. “Voters won’t go for that,” Holmsley said. “The responsibility falls on the heads of the federal government, which must act to take care of those issues. I don’t think Texas would be on the right track in pursuing that law. It’s up to the feds to become more involved in issues that affect border communities like El Paso.”
Another issue that won’t play in El Paso, according to Holmsley is to eliminate the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution – an Amendment that allows babies born in the U.S. of undocumented parents to automatically become U.S. citizens. “I’m sure some people feel that way, but, I don’t see how that would go. I don’t think it’s fair, although it would help the immigration issue.”
El Paso’s Republican Party, which has taken a back seat to Democrats for many decades, counts some 800 active supporters, although the numbers are growing, and Holmsley wants to make sure that the trend continues. Will they ever become dominant in El Paso politics? Only time will tell.
In a Republican Party website, the party calls itself a “true reflection of traditional Texas values. It is these values – core Republican principles – that will sustain Texas into the future and continue to make the state strong, prosperous, and proud.”
The Party stands for limited government, principled innovative leadership, honest compassion, opportunity for one and all, quality education, personal responsibility, freedom, and rugged individualism. A favorite quote for Republicans everywhere is that of former President Ronald Reagan: “The kind of government.that is strong enough to give you everything you need is also strong enough to take away everything you have.”
In addition, the Party hopes to support strong families who are intent on giving their children the hope of a better tomorrow, the promise of a safe and secure today, and the appreciation and respect of yesterday.
“I don’t believe El Pasoans will ever change from the Democratic Party,” Holmsley said. “But we would be remiss if we didn’t try to attract more people, especially Hispanics, to our party. Who knows? We just need to keep working on that, to have the Republicans become a majority, we need to do more outreach.
“As for U.S. troops going into Mexico, as was suggested by our Governor Rick Perry recently, I don’t think that’s ever going to happen, not without Mexico’s approval. He’s just throwing that out for debate, testing the waters. Conceivably, for Mexico to ask for help, I don’t see it.”