For over a week, Federal Election Commissioner James E. “Trey” Trainor has taken to Twitter to sound the alarm over a lack of an election integrity plan from the Republican Party of Texas and its Chairman, Matt Rinaldi.
Trainor, an election lawyer with a long history in Texas politics, has served on the Federal Election Commission since 2020. Nominated by President Trump, Trainor served as Chairman of the Commission at the end of the Trump administration.
Before his service on the Commission, Trainor worked as an attorney in private practice in Texas and represented several close political allies of Rinaldi. Trainor’s past clients included Empower Texans, Michael Quinn Sullivan, Texas Right to Life, State Senator Brian Birdwell, former State Senator Larry Taylor, and former State Representative Nathan Macias- the father of Defend Texas Liberty President Luke Macias.
Trainor began his string of tweets expressing concerns about the Republican Party of Texas’ election integrity efforts on December 14, writing, “Breaking: As of today, @TexasGOP under @MattRinaldiTX has no election integrity effort to monitor #Election2024. Nor has he or @RNCVoteProtect articulated a viable plan. Shocking turn of events!”
In follow-up tweets, Trainor highlighted issues such as documented instances of voter fraud in Texas, voter data irregularities in Harris County, attempts to expand mail-in voting, and efforts by the Biden administration to limit poll watchers.
Trainor’s tweets about the Texas GOP’s lack of election integrity efforts can be viewed below:
In response to Trainor’s tweets, Rinaldi dismissed Trainor’s concerns and attempted to characterize them as driven by personal concerns.
In a response to Trainor’s initial tweet on December 14, Rinaldi wrote, “This is false. I’m sorry your wife’s contract was not renewed and we decided to go in a different direction. But trying to turn personnel decisions into some sort of “protection racket” is inappropriate.”
Rinaldi’s responses to Trainor did not elaborate on what that “different direction” consisted of, nor did the responses detail what plan he or the Party had for election integrity for the 2024 election cycle.
Trainor’s wife, Lucy Trainor, had been working under a contract with the Republican Party of Texas on election integrity issues. Rinaldi had previously touted these efforts during the 2022 election cycle. On November 8, 2022, Rinaldi wrote, “The @TexasGOP’s election integrity program resulted in GOP trained poll watcher coverage like we have never seen in any previous election in Texas. For perspective, Dallas County has had 2%-3% coverage in the past. We are at 97-98% coverage this cycle.” In a follow-up tweet, Rinaldi added, “This has allowed us to prevent election irregularities before they happen, and respond to and resolve issues quicker than ever before.”
Rinaldi’s assertion that Lucy Trainor’s contract was not renewed so the Party could “go in a different direction” is also inconsistent with a letter recently sent to State Republican Executive Committee members by Republican Party of Texas Vice-Chair Dr. Dana Myers. As first reported by Current Revolt on November 13, Myers wrote that “funding for the RPT Election Integrity (EI) programs runs out at the end of December” and that she would be trying to raise funds to keep the program up and running.
Myers’ letter specifically referenced a conversation with Rinaldi relating to Lucy Trainor’s continued employment by the Party. “Given how vital the upcoming 2024 election is for our country, I called the Chairman to discuss a possible solution. He agreed that if I could raise the needed 2024 funds to keep the program up and running, RPT would continue to employ Lucy and support the El project,” wrote Myers.
Despite Rinaldi’s attempts to paint the matter as limited to Lucy Trainor’s contract, Trey Trainor insisted it was about the importance of election integrity. In response to one of Rinaldi’s tweets, Trey Trainor replied, “I don’t want her working for you! So no, I’m not trying to get you to hire her back. I’m trying to get you to do your job and be concerned about #Election2024 integrity. You’ve got no one focused on that issue even though it’s a platform priority.”
Sources within the Party were unaware of any specific election integrity efforts from the Republican Party of Texas for 2024.