WASHINGTON — Republican presumptive presidential nominee Donald Trump Thursday announced U.S. Rep. Michael McCaul of Austin would be among the featured speakers at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland next week.
The selection — and McCaul’s acceptance of the invitation — illustrates signs that some in the Republican Party are lining up behind their controversial GOP standard bearer. McCaul is the chairman of the U.S. House Committee on Homeland Security and frequently serves as the party spokesman on national security, especially during terrorist attacks.
The Trump campaign scheduled McCaul to speak on national security in primetime on the first night of the convention, July 18.
Convention speakers typically come from two spectrums of a party: the rising stars and elders who evoke nostalgia among the party faithful. But over the course of his campaign, Trump has made a succession of controversial statements that led many Republican politicians who would be expected to be likely convention speakers to sit out this convention.
Trump has promised a succession of entertainers and sports stars at the convention. But the McCaul choice adds policy heft. While often an Obama administration critic, McCaul is not viewed as a partisan bomb thrower.
Personally wealthy, McCaul is often mentioned as a future statewide candidate.
It was also announced Thursday that another Texan, Marcus Luttrell, will speak at the convention. Luttrell is a former Navy SEAL who is close with ex-Gov. Rick Perry. Luttrell and Perry were among those who accompanied Trump on part of his swing through Texas last month.
Patrick Svitek contributed to this report.
This article originally appeared in The Texas Tribune, a nonpartisan, nonprofit media organization that informs Texans — and engages with them – about public policy, politics, government and statewide issues.
Top image: U.S. House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Michael McCaul visits with the press before his meeting with Gov. Greg Abbott at the Texas Capitol on Feb. 18, 2015. Photo by Bob Daemmrich.