State GOP official says local censure is unenforceable
The recent attempted censure of Bandera County Republican Chair Lynn Haueter by the Bandera GOP’s executive committee is “unenforceable” because criteria for the action hasn’t been met, says Texas Republican Party Vice-Chair Cat Parks.
“While the Rule 44 Censure process has been provided as a remedy for the party to address misconduct of its elected officials, upon review of the ‘Articles of Censure’ produced by the Bandera Executive Committee, the standards set forth in the rule have not been met,” Parks said in a March 11 statement to the Bandera Bulletin.
Parks added Rule 44 “clearly outlines limited and specific actions that may be taken against an official that meets the criteria.”
The censure process referenced by Parks says a county’s executive committee may adopt a resolution censuring a Republican public or party officeholder “for three or more actions taken during the current biennium in opposition to the core principles of the Republican Party.”
Those core principles, available in full at texasgop.org/platform, state the party believes in: the laws of nature and nature’s God; strict adherence to the original language and intent of the Declaration of Independence and U.S. and Texas constitutions; upholding the sanctity of human life from fertilization to natural death; preserving Texas and U.S. sovereignty; limiting government power; personal accountability and responsibility; self-sufficient families founded on traditional marriage of natural man and natural woman; having an educated population with freedom-of-education choice; the right to defend self and property; a free-enterprise society without government interference; and honoring those who serve and protect U.S. freedom.
On February 24, four Articles of Censure were presented to Haueter by the Bandera County Executive Committee (BCEC). Haueter did not officially respond, although she was told she had a week to do so.
On March 8, five articles of censure were presented to Haueter with a concluding note saying they stood due to a lack of response.
In addition, six conditions were laid out for Haueter to follow, including immediately vacating her office and title, relinquishing financial and administrative controls, returning property and having no part in this year’s precinct or county conventions.
The March 8 articles were signed by five BCEC members: Party Secretary Conrad Striegl, Precinct 101 Chair Laura Briscoe, Precinct 408 Chair Deanna Skoglund, Precinct 305 Chair Darcy Hasty and Precinct 306 Chair Rene Leith.
“Again, in reviewing the penalties to be applied as set forth by the Bandera County Executive Committee, they are not in accordance with either the Rule 44 guidelines nor are they in compliance with applicable State Election Code. Therefore, they are found to be unenforceable,” Parks said.
Parks expressed her gratitude to Haueter for “exceptional public service to the Bandera County Republican Party in service to the state of Texas.”
Haueter was first elected as Chair of the Bandera Republican Party in July 2019 to fill a vacancy. She was re-elected in 2020 for her current term, which will end in June 2022.
Haueter did not seek re-election and will be replaced by Conrad Striegl, who received 3,694 votes in an uncontested race for Chair of the Bandera Republican Party.