The committee voted 40 to 20 to host the meeting that about 6,000 people are expected to attend in Houston’s George R. Brown convention center in just over two weeks.
During a lengthy virtual meeting, those opposed to hosting the convention in person said it would endanger older delegates and would disenfranchise many people who would not go out of fear of the virus. About 50% of state delegates who would normally attend have already said they would not go.
But committee members backing the in-person convention said it was a question of personal liberty and canceling it or moving it online would set a terrible precedent for the Republican National Convention, which President Donald Trump has said will take place in person in Florida next month.
“Texas maintained our in-person convention process through World War Two, we met together after our 9/11 terrorist attacks despite the danger in the air,” said executive committee member David Covey.