Decision Desk HQ called the election for Abbott at 9:23 p.m. Central time. The Associated Press also called the race for Abbott.
Abbott wrote on Twitter late on Tuesday that Texans have “sent a message that they want to keep the Lone Star State the beacon of opportunity that we provided over the past eight years.”
The Republican Governors Association released the following statement on Governor Greg Abbott’s victory in Texas:
“Governor Greg Abbott has fought tirelessly to grow Texas’ economy, give parents more say in their child’s education, support law enforcement, and defend the Lone Star State with incredible adversity in the face of the Biden Border Crisis,” said RGA Co-Chairs Governors Doug Ducey and Pete Ricketts. “Texas and the entire nation owe a great debt to Governor Abbott’s leadership, and we couldn’t be more grateful to see him re-elected for four more years tonight.”
Abbott, 64, has held the governor’s office since 2015, and multiple polls in recent months had shown him consistently leading against O’Rourke in a state that has not elected a Democratic governor in more than three decades.
Abbott’s election campaign focused on key issues including abortions, school safety, and defending the right to keep and bear arms.
The former state attorney general and Texas Supreme Court justice had also focused his campaign heavily on securing the border amid a mass immigration crisis in the state that he has widely blamed on the Biden administration’s failed border policies.
Abbott has come under fire from Democrats for busing thousands of illegal immigrants to Democrat-controlled “sanctuary” cities, which limit cooperation with the federal efforts to enforce immigration law, such as New York, Washington, and Chicago.
However, the governor has defended his decision to do so, stating that the move ensures the illegal aliens don’t end up homeless or hungry while also preventing them from overwhelming Texas communities.
Beto Unsuccessful Again
El Paso native O’Rourke, 49, born Robert Francis O’Rourke, previously served as a small business owner, a City council representative, and a member of Congress before running against Abbott in the race for governor.
This was his second attempt at the statewide office following his bid for Senate in 2018. Ultimately, that bid proved unsuccessful and the Democrat lost by just 3 percent to Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), although it marked a surprisingly narrow defeat.
O’Rourke also entered the 2020 presidential race, but he withdrew the bid before the primaries began.
His campaign has focused largely on gun control, universal background checks, and red flag laws as well as LGBTQ issues, abortion, marijuana legalization, and securing the border in a “safe, legal, and orderly” way via drones and other technology.
He drew confusion when he appeared to backtrack earlier this year on comments he made in 2019 when he asserted that he would confiscate AR-15-style rifles from Americans. Yet in February, the Democrat said that he had no interest in taking “anything from anyone” and instead just wanted to “make sure that we protect our fellow Texans far better than we’re doing right now.”
The former congressman also made headlines when he responded to a heckler with an expletive while on stage at a campaign stop in Mineral Wells, Texas, earlier in August.
O’Rourke has not yet commented on his election loss.
From The Epoch Times