Late on Monday, former President Donald Trump called for someone to take up a primary challenge against Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX), who has endorsed Trump’s primary rival, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, for president.
“Has any smart and energetic Republican in the Great State of Texas decided to run in the Primary against RINO Congressman Chip Roy,” Trump said, using the acronym for “Republican in name only,” in a post to his Truth Social platform. “For the right person, he is very beatable. If interested, let me know!!!”
As some journalists noted on social media, the filing deadline in Texas for primary candidates to apply for the 2024 election came and went on Monday, December 11. Still, each term in the House is only two years long, and Trump could enlist a challenger in the 2026 contest if Roy seeks another term. For the general election next year, Roy has a challenger from the Democratic Party in Kristin Hook, a scientist.
Voters first elected Roy to the House in 2018 after he established himself in politics working for other prominent Texas Republicans, including former Governor Rick Perry and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX). Now in his third term, Roy represents the 21st Congressional District in Texas, which includes South Austin, North San Antonio, and the Texas Hill Country.
As a congressman, Roy has pressed for reining in government spending, grilled and blasted Democrats over the border and immigration crisis, advocated for the development and better access to lifesaving medicines, and challenged leadership over COVID-19 vaccine and mask mandates during the pandemic.
Roy became a member of the House Freedom Caucus and boasts a “Liberty Score” of 100% as well as a 98% on the Heritage Action’s Scorecard, which looks at how conservative members are in their voting records and co-sponsorships. A few weeks ago, Roy shot back at keyboard warriors who call GOP legislators like him a “RINO,” saying, “You can kiss my a**,” adding, “I’ve spent a lifetime fighting for limited government conservatism.”
In March, Roy endorsed DeSantis — himself a former congressman — for president before the Florida governor even announced his White House bid. The next president needs to be “a vibrant and energetic leader with the faith, vision, and courage to chart a new course,” Roy said at the time.
Trump’s Monday post to Truth Social came in the hours after Roy appeared with DeSantis for a Fox News interview, during which they discussed the border situation. Roy took a swipe at Trump’s record on immigration and, in regards to polling showing DeSantis trailing Trump in Iowa, the congressman said, “We’re for principles, not princes. We don’t coronate anybody.”