Welcome to Season Two of The Elephant Heard!

It’s a new season with the Republican party of Texas and the podcast. Today my guest is the new chairman of the Republican party, Matt Rinaldi.


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Jonathan Schober:
Welcome back to another episode of the Elephant Herd. This is season two, and it’s a new season with the Republican party of Texas. Today my guest is the new chairman of the Republican party, Matt Rinaldi, Matt, welcome to the show.

Matt Rinaldi:
Thank you for having me. I appreciate it.

Jonathan Schober:
So a lot of things going on as you have taken over as the chairmanship. We are now in special session season, which is a little bit unusual in Texas. Why don’t you kind of bring us up to speed, a little bit of who you are and then what you want to see out of these special sessions that I think we’re going to have, ongoing perhaps, throughout the summer?

Matt Rinaldi:
Well, [inaudible 00:01:27] all day was just selected RPT chairman, two weeks and two days ago. I am a political refugee from the state of Connecticut who moved here 20 years ago. I have been very active in Republican politics over the last 20 years as a precinct chair, attending conventions as an activist. I ran for and won my election to be State Representative from Northwest Dallas County. I was one of the top three most conservative statewide representatives in the 2015, 2017 session. And I recently was elected to be RPT chair.

Jonathan Schober:
Excellent. And now turning over to our special sessions, what do you think needs to be done? You know, we’ve got the Democrats that have left Texas, they’re in D.C. What should we be doing? And what should the priorities be in these sessions?

Matt Rinaldi:
Well, what we should be doing is securing the Democrats attendance by issuing arrest warrants for when they reenter the state and physically bring them back to the Capitol to do their jobs, like we have done in past instances where this happened. We also need to revoke their committee chairmanships and stop sharing power with Democrats in the legislature. This special session, I would also add as many GOP priorities as possible. Preferably all the GOP priorities, but at the very least child gender modification and banning taxpayer lobbying should be added to the call. Those are easily attainable wins on issues that 80% of the population agrees with us on.

Jonathan Schober:
Excellent. And you have a unique perspective. I think you may be the first chairman who also is a former legislator, certainly the first in recent history. Give us a little bit of your insight. You’ve been there. You’ve been on the floor of the house. You’ve been in the game. Tell us from that perspective, people think the party is this great organization has really the activists and it’s the people that make up the party. What’s your perspective of how we can engage and kind of influence people that might not be motivated the same way that some of our … with our priorities?

Matt Rinaldi:
Yeah. Well, having served and the legislature, I saw the vast majority of people there have great intentions. It’s just the culture and everything about the legislature is geared towards maintaining the status quo. And the only way that people veer from the status quo is if you have a leader who’s ready to change direction. Like Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick has been tremendously successful passing conservative priorities. Or, like the freedom caucus in the house, you’re willing to create friction to get your priorities over the finish line.

So I always said, you do want to get the best people elected, but like Milton Friedman once said, “The goal is not necessarily to get the right people in office, it’s to get the wrong people to do the right things.” And that’s what we need to do. Sometimes.

Jonathan Schober:
I think that’s a great quote. It’s about making sure that whether they’re right, wrong, RD, that they’re doing the right things.

Matt Rinaldi:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Jonathan Schober:
Well what I’d like to do, I’m going to take a little break. And when we come back, I’d like to ask you a last question. The question is going to be, “What is it that keeps you up at night?”

Speaker 3:
You’re listening to the Elephant Herd. We’ll be right back.

Pastor Vic Schober:
Promises. God’s promises. He makes them, and he keeps them. I want to share something today that’s a promise from James Chapter One, Verse 25. And this is what it says. “Listen, who so looks into the perfect law of liberty shall be blessed in his deed.” Well, would you like to have a blessing? Would you like to have some good things come from the Lord on whatever project you have going? Well, let me suggest that you look into the perfect law of liberty. And you say, “Well, what book is that?” That’s the Bible. That’s God’s word.

If you will let his word speak to you, you will have encouragement. You’ll have confidence. You’ll be given boldness. And beyond that, you will be blessed by God himself and by his holy spirit in whatever project you have going. Doesn’t matter what the project is. God wants to bless you so you can be successful in it. I’m Vic Schober, and remember God keeps his promises.

Speaker 3:
The capital of the Lone Star state. Welcome back to the Elephant Herd.

Jonathan Schober:
We’ve been joined today with the new Republican party of Texas chairman, Matt Rinaldi, talking about some of our additional opportunities to move forward the legislative priorities in the special sessions, hold these Democrats accountable for leaving the state. But what I want to close with is Matt, what is it that keeps you up at night?

Matt Rinaldi:
Well, what keeps me up at night is whether or not my three-year-old son is actually going to be able to live in the America that I grew up in, and that my father immigrated to from Italy when he was a kid. I’m worried about how the country’s been destabilized over the past year, by an overaggressive COVID response, that completely redefined the role of government in our society. And I’m worried about how some of this mass hysteria and mass fear has accepted that increased role for government, how much the Democrats have taken advantage of it over the past year. So that’s why I ran. That’s what keeps me up at night. That’s why I ran for RPT chair to change that.

Jonathan Schober:
Well, I do appreciate that you’ve run. I appreciate your heart and your passion. A lot needs to be done in a short amount of time. Thank you so much for coming on the show.

Matt Rinaldi:
Thank you.

Jonathan Schober:
Well, if you like the Elephant Herd, you can learn more and more at Texasgop.org/podcast. If you have any comments, suggestions for upcoming topics, you can send me a text, just text me at 512-729-5712.


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