Many Republicans like me view conservatism as largely steeped in principle, while others consider it ever-evolving, based in part on whom the Republican Party nominates for president and the ideas that individual promotes. Hence, we have conservatives who support Donald Trump and Never Trump conservatives.
Despite ideological differences between them, these factions appear to be dissolving. Eighty percent of those polled in February at the Conservative Political Action Conference agreed that Trump is "realigning" conservatives, suggesting that conservatives may now feel united by the president.
If this poll signifies anything, it is perhaps that conservatives view the principles embodied in the Republican Party — smaller government, personal responsibility and values — as goals that unite and help every American.
These principles led me to join the Republican Party in 2004 and to run for public office in 2010, becoming Texas' first elected black female Republican legislator. As Texas led the nation in job growth because of low taxes, a sound regulatory climate and tort reform, I sought to maintain our state as a successful conservative model for the rest of the country.
My four years as a Republican state legislator and my recent appointment to the Trump Transition at the Department of Justice prompted me to reflect on what it means to be conservative under Donald Trump's presidency.