As the 88th session of the Texas Legislature moves forward, a small group of self-styled “conservatives” continues to oppose the work being done by Republican officeholders to enact conservative public policy and misrepresent their accomplishments. Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan and Governor Greg Abbott are the most frequent targets of their ire.
Despite claiming to represent “the grassroots” and desiring to control the Republican agenda, some of these vocal critics have made public comments indicating their disdain for the Republican Party, even going as far as opposing Republican nominees in the 2022 general election and expressing a desire for a new political party to oppose the Republican Party.
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Julie McCarty, founder and CEO of the True Texas Project, describes her organization as “the answer to the failed GOP… & maybe the church too?” In a tweet last year, the True Texas Project called the Republican party “a fake opposition party designed to keep the American right wing from having any political power.”
The True Texas Project, based in Tarrant county, now operates chapters across Texas. In addition to operating as a non-profit organization, the True Texas Project also operates a Political Action Committee, which is actively involved in Republican Primaries. Julie McCarty’s husband, Fred McCarty, serves as President and Treasurer of the True Texas Project PAC.
During the 2022 election cycle, the True Texas Project PAC received over 92% of its funding from former State Representative Jonathan Stickland’s Defend Texas Liberty PAC. Stickland has been a frequent speaker at True Texas Project events, as has Republican Party of Texas Chairman Matt Rinaldi.
Julie McCarty, who endorsed Don Huffines in the Republican primary for Governor, publicly stated that she did not vote for certain Republicans in the 2022 general election. In a Facebook comment criticizing Republican elected officials, McCarty said, “Yes, some of us have stopped voting for them, but not enough. I undervoted my State Rep in the General. And I did not vote for Abbott.”
Under the Texas Election Code, key positions integral to the secure and efficient operations of elections are determined by the political Party whose nominee for Governor received the most votes in a particular county or precinct. These positions include election judges in voting precincts, presiding judge of the early voting ballot board, and chair of the signature verification committee.
Fred McCarty has been even more vocal in his criticism of the Republican Party and Republican elected officials, particularly when it comes to what he views as their lack of support for white people.
Tweeting from his handle @littlefreddymac, Fred McCarty posted an image of a tweet reading, “The Republican Party would rather America disappear than Whites identify as Whites” along with “#GOP.” In another tweet, Fred McCarty stated, “Republicans would rather lose than court white voters.
Fred McCarty also criticized Donald Trump for what he perceived as a lack of support for white people, writing, “Would it have killed Trump to do something/anything for white voters? He didn’t deliver shit. He did offer to give blacks a half a trillion dollars! That got him a nominal bump in support.”
According to Fred McCarty, Republican voters are seeking authoritarian leadership. “The moral of the Trump story is that the Right-wing is done with normie Republicans and desperately wants an authoritarian. Trump was a dud but we will eventually unite behind an illiberal man of action.”
Fred McCarty has also described Republicans as “ghey azz faqs” and has encouraged efforts for a new political party to emerge to defeat the Republican Party. In a 2021 tweet, Fred McCarty wrote, “The people who form a third party have to rob as much talent from the GOP as possible and then fight like holy hell against what’s left of the GOP. Absolutely destroy it. It is your real enemy. Deny them the ability to organize.”
Jeff Younger, who unsuccessfully ran for State Representative in Texas House District 63 in the 2022 Republican Primary, has also used his social media following to attack Texas Republicans. Younger, who received over $170,000 from the Defend Texas Liberty PAC, has raised eyebrows with his recent tweets endorsing single fatherhood through the use of surrogate mothers, calling marriage a “scam,” and claiming that “single mothers are destroying Western societies.”
In addition to his recent tweets attacking single mothers and the institution of marriage, Younger has advocated for conservatives to vote against Republicans. “Stop voting for republicans until they start enacting conservative social reforms. Or lose. Your choice”, wrote Younger.
Younger has also voiced support for creating a new political party, stating, “We need a party for traditionalists. Republican voters are so stupid, they will never vote for it. They will dutifully elect liberal Republicans. Republicans often criticize black voters for voting Democrat, even though it’s against black interests. But Republicans do the same.”
In addition to receiving significant financial support from the Defend Texas Liberty PAC, other donors to Younger’s campaign included former State Senator and gubernatorial candidate Don Huffines, Republican Party of Texas Legislative Priorities Chairwoman Jill Glover, and State Republican Party Executive Committeeman David Wylie, who chairs the “Ban Democrat Chairs” sub-committee for the Party.
Political consultant Luke Macias, who hosts a podcast for Texas Scorecard, which is frequently critical of Texas Republican leaders, has also rooted for the defeat of Republican candidates in the general election. On November 1, 2022, Macias devoted an episode of his podcast to discussing why he hoped that Jamee Jolly, the Republican nominee for Texas House District 70 in Collin County, would lose to her Democrat opponent.
Macias has publicly encouraged people to donate to the True Texas Project and has been a featured speaker at their events. His company, Macias Strategies, was paid over $500,000 by Don Huffines’ campaign for Governor and has also performed work for the Defend Texas Liberty PAC.
Jolly lost her race against Democrat Mihaela Plesa by a narrow 50.7%-49.3% margin in the closest race for the Texas House in the 2022 general election. Despite being one of the few battleground state legislative races in 2022, the Republican Party of Texas did not contribute to Jolly’s campaign.