|Charles Eugene "Chip" Roy|
U.S. Representative for Texas' 21st congressional district
|Assumed office |
January 3, 2019
|Preceded by||Lamar Smith|
|Born|| August 7, 1972|
Bethesda, Montgomery County
Resident of Hays County, Texas
|Spouse(s)||Carrah Jo Roy|
|Residence||Hays County, Texas|
Charles Eugene Roy, known as Chip Roy (born August 7, 1972), is the Republican U.S. Representative for Texas's 21st congressional district. A former aide to Governor Rick Perry, U.S. Senator Ted Cruz, and Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, Roy is considered a conservative firebrand. He succeeds the long-term U.S. Representative Lamar Smith. In the general election, Roy defeated the Democrat Joseph Kopser, 176,913 (50.3 percent) to 167,020 (47.5 percent). Some seven thousand additional votes went to the Libertarian Lee Santos (2.1 percent).
Born in Bethesda, Maryland, to transplanted Texan and Baptist parents, Roy was reared in northern Virginia and recalls a boyhood highlighted by visits to Washington, D.C., and the national monuments and battle sites of the American Revolution and the Civil War. Roy told the Austin American-Statesman that from early in life, he had a belief in "limited government being good for freedom. I was raised on the idea of rugged individualism." He graduated with bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of Virginia at Charlottesville and received his legal credentials through the University of Texas Law School in Austin.
In 2011, Governor Perry picked Roy to manage the state Office of State-Federal Relations. At his confirmation hearing, Roy surprised legislators by indicating that the office should be shut down completely or at least “stand for something.” Roy said that his interest is "liberty, state sovereignty, and an end to the crippling pile of debt and regulation coming from Washington." The nomination gained state Senate approval, 6–1, with the only dissenter being the liberal Senator Kirk Watson of Austin, who lost the attorney general's race in 2002 to now Governor Greg Abbott.  Even before the hearing, Roy was the ghost writer of Perry's book, Fed Up! Our Fight to Save America from Washington, which argues that Social Security is a Ponzi scheme. He soon left the State-Federal Relations post after being diagnosed with Stage 3 non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Roy said that the cancer is in remission; he is bald from treatments. In November 2011, Roy was named a senior adviser to Perry's ill-fated first presidential campaign. In 2013, he joined the Cruz staff but left in 2015 to work for Attorney General Paxton. He now heads a political action committee called "Trusted Leadership", which raised funds for the 2016 Cruz presidential campaign. He heads a states rights' center at the Texas Public Policy Foundation in Austin.
Bernie McNamee, the Paxton chief of staff, calls Roy "a great strategic thinker, a principled conservative, sets clear goals and has a clear vision of what public policy should be in order to fulfill the vision of the Constitution and its framers.
He and his wife, Carrah Jo Roy, a fellow attorney, have two children and live in northern Hays County near Austin. The physically large 21st district includes south and central Austin, northern San Antonio, and a large portion of the legendary Texas Hill Country to the west. Roy has pledged if elected to fight any taxpayer funding for the abortion provider, Planned Parenthood, to reduce federal regulations and spending; to support a border wall with Mexico, and to transfer Medicaid oversight to states.
In addition to carrying the support of Senator Cruz, who cut radio and television spots for Roy, the candidate is endorsed by Perry, incumbent Representative Lamar Smith and U.S. Representative Louie Gohmert of Tyler, Texas. JoAnn Fleming of "Grassroots America - We The People" PAC is another early Roy supporter, as is the Club for Growth.
Roy won the Republican runoff contest with exactly 18,000 votes (52.7 percent) Matt McCall's 16,181 (47.3 percent). McCall led in five smaller counties, but Roy took majorities in populous Bexar and Travis counties. Joseph Kopser, meanwhile, defeated fellow Democrat Mary Street Wilson, 14,706 (58 percent) to 10,667 (42 percent) to contest Roy in the general election.
Outgoing Representative Lamar Smith said that he believes his successor will be "a credible conservative. ... I just don't think the district is going to elect a liberal Democrat."
On May 24, 2019, Roy single-handedly blocked an establishment-backed disaster spending bill that did not provide funds for the humanitarian crisis on the southern border. His tactic delayed the bill for several weeks. Roy has criticized both Democrats and some of his fellow Republicans who refuse to fix the border crisis. Roy said that those who oppose border security are "choosing hand-wringing to solutions." The disaster aid bill was "going to have $19 billion it, unpaid for, and was not going to address the crisis that our country's dealing with at the border."
In 2020, Roy won reelection to his second House term by defeating the popular Texas liberal Wendy Russell Davis, a long-time champion of abortion.
On January 13, 2021, Roy leaped to the defense of the No. 3 House Republican, Liz Cheney of Wyoming, and voiced objection to removing Cheney from the conference chairmanship. Conservative members of the conference have rejected Cheney's vote to impeach President Trump following riots at the Capitol.
- Election Returns. Texas Secretary of State (November 6, 2018). Retrieved on November 7, 2018.
- Chip Roy runs for Republican nod for Congress. Austin American-Statesman (May 7, 2018). Retrieved on May 19, 2018.
- Endorsements: Chip Roy for Congress. Chiproy.com. Retrieved on May 22, 2018.
- Republican Primary Runoff Election Returns for Congressional District 21. Texas Secretary of State (May 22, 2018). Retrieved on May 23, 2018.
- Democratic Primary Runoff returns. Texas Secretary of State (May 22, 2018). Retrieved on May 23, 2018.
- Jasper Scherer, "Congressman Smith campaigns for Roy", The San Antonio Express-News, May 4, 2018, p. A5.
- Berger, Judson; Pergram, Chad (May 24, 2019). Lone GOP rep blocks disaster aid bill in surprise move. Fox News. Retrieved May 24, 2019.
- Moran, Sean (May 24, 2019). Chip Roy Blocks Disaster Aid Bill Due to Lack of Border Wall Funding. Breitbart News. Retrieved May 24, 2019.
- Madison Summers (June 8, 2019). GOP Lawmaker Takes Dig at Dems and Some of His Own Who 'Do Not Care' to 'Secure Our Border Now'. IJR.com. Retrieved on June 25, 2019.
- Liz Cheney faces blowback after embracing impeachment: Conservative hard-liners are looking to strip the No. 3 House Republican from her leadership post. politico.com (January 13, 2021). Retrieved on January 21, 2021.