Texas’ political leaders responded quickly to Governor Greg Abbott’s first State of the State Address. Abbott delivered his historic speech before a packed Texas House gallery and a joint session of the Legislature. The Governor called on the legislature to double funding for securing the border between Texas and Mexico.
The two men who will have to lead Abbott’s agenda through the Texas Legislature are Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick (R) and House Speaker Joe Straus (R-San Antonio). Gov. Patrick appeared very happy with the Governor’s address. “As Lieutenant Governor, it was everything I wanted to hear in the State of the State address,” Patrick stated. “He pinpointed the issues that both of us presented to the voters of Texas over the last 18 months. Texans overwhelmingly support: additional border security, property tax and business tax relief, transportation funding, education reform and school choice.”
“Regarding his emergency items the Senate is already moving forward on a number of issues including border security, transportation and ethics reform,” Patrick continued. “It is clear that Governor Abbott and I stand shoulder to shoulder on these ideas. I look forward to working with him, and Speaker Joe Straus, in passing the people’s agenda.”
In a slightly more reserved response, Speaker Straus said, “Governor Abbott put a powerful spotlight on issues that are very important to Texas and to the Texas House, and I am confident that the House is going to address those priorities in a meaningful way. The House will carefully consider the details of these proposals as we continue to develop a sound, disciplined state budget. We look forward to working further with Governor Abbott and the Senate on behalf of the citizens of Texas.”
Freshman Senator Brandon Creighton (R-Conroe) also quickly weighed in on the Governor’s address. “I share Governor Abbott’s confidence for the continued prosperity of our great state,” the Senator said. “The strength of our nation depends on the economic strength of Texas. The actions we take today will ensure our state remains America’s driving force for individual liberty and economic opportunity well into the future.”
“We have a constitutional obligation to keep our state efficient, transparent, and remain good stewards of every dollar entrusted to us by Texas taxpayers,” Creighton concluded. Working alongside my colleagues, we will continue to defend our state’s sovereignty, secure our border, pave the way for meaningful transportation solutions, and equip our children with the education they deserve.”
Veteran Texas Capitol reporter Scott Braddock with the Quorum Report noticed some Republican lawmakers appeared less than enthusiastic about Abbott’s pledge to sign open carry into law. “Quite a few GOP lawmakers sat on their hands as @GregAbbott_TX said he looks forward to signing open carry legislation,” Braddock tweeted during the speech.
Other media outlets also added their commentary to the mix. “In his first State of the State Address, Gov. Greg Abbott on Tuesday laid out an ambitious agenda that included five emergency items, legislative proposals the Texas Legislature can begin considering immediately,” Mike Ward wrote with the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal.
Jon Herskovitz with Reuters also commented on Abbott’s speech writing, “Texas Governor Greg Abbott pledged to double the state’s spending on securing the border with Mexico, saying on Tuesday the federal government has not done enough to halt illegal immigration.”
Bob Price is a senior political news contributor for Breitbart Texas and a member of the original Breitbart Texas team. Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX.