(CNN)Allen West, the chair of the Texas Republican Party, announced his resignation on Friday as he teased a potential run for statewide office.
He will remain chairman until his replacement is picked on July 11, the Texas GOP said in a statement.
“It has been my distinct honor to serve as Chairman of the Republican Party of Texas. I pray Godspeed for this governing body,” said West, who submitted his “irrevocable resignation” Friday morning.
The Texas GOP said West will “take this opportunity to prayerfully reflect on a new chapter” in his political career.
West, a one-term Florida congressman and retired Army lieutenant colonel, was first elected Texas GOP chair last year as a strong supporter of then-President Donald Trump and critic of Texas’ coronavirus restrictions.
The Texas GOP lauded West for his “tireless effort to make gains on our Legislative Priorities such as Constitutional Carry, the Heart Beat Bill, and Election Integrity.”
But West’s time as GOP chair, which was set to expire in a couple months, was marked by controversy as he broke with the norms of the role to criticize Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and fellow Texas Republicans rather than work to unite the party.
In interviews after the 2020 presidential election, West falsely suggested that Texas could secede from the United States and become an independent country. He also promoted Trump’s debunked claims of widespread fraud in the 2020 election.
West protested last fall with other prominent conservatives against the Abbott’s Covid-19 restrictions and mask mandate and sued the governor for extending early voting amid the pandemic. Abbott plans to run for reelection in 2022 and already faces a GOP primary, but has Trump’s backing for
Texas GOP chair Allen West resigns
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