GOP’s Abbott wins 3rd term as Texas governor, beats O’Rourke

Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott won a decisive third term Tuesday night, beating Democrat Beto O’Rourke mid game After the Uwald school massacre and a strict new abortion ban, it tested the direction of America’s mega-red state.

The win underscores Abbott’s staying power. Despite spending more than $200 million in total on the campaign, O’Rourke is poised to lose by double digits just four years after narrowly losing the closest U.S. Senate in decades .

“Tonight, Texans sent a very loud message,” Abbott said in his victory speech in the southern border city of McAllen.

In a fast-changing state of Texas — a booming Big Mac of 29 million that is becoming younger, less white and attractive to big corporations — faced with a high-profile and tough Challenger, Abbott remains a Republican bastion.Abbott has used anxiety about crime and inflation against a charismatic competitor that has been battered by mass shootings, an abortion ban and Fatal failure of the state’s power grid in 2021.

The results now put two of Texas’ biggest politicians — one already running for the White House and the other possibly considering his own bid — on opposite tracks.

Abbott, 64, cemented his status as a potential 2024 presidential candidate and secured his status as the state’s second-longest-serving governor.He maximized his executive power, in US-Mexico border In the name of curbing immigration, while smashing challengers from his power, and splurges to crowd out legislative critics.

He will continue to be hit by a solid Republican majority in Congress following a victory that positively appealed to Hispanic voters in South Texas and seized on economic anxiety and recession fears. According to AP VoteCast, more than four in 10 Texas voters rank the economy as the most important issue facing the country, Extensive survey of nearly 3,400 voters.

Texas voters are divided over how Abbott has handled the gubernatorial job, with a nearly even split in favor and disapproval.

O’Rourke now faces whether it’s time to move on.

It was his third failed bid for office in four years, further dimming the once-bright future of the former congressman who rose to prominence as a Democratic superstar after nearly winning the U.S. Senate race in 2018. Speaking to supporters in his hometown of El Paso after the loss, O’Rourke did not directly say whether he would run again.

“I don’t know what my or your future role will be, but I’m fighting for my life,” he said.

The race shed light on the damage done by his stalling in the 2019 Democratic presidential primary, as he had to answer the liberal stance he took on the national stage, delaying the Texans he needed to win home. He also faced the downside of President Joe Biden’s low approval ratings, which Abbott took advantage of, running ads that morphed O’Rourke’s and Biden’s faces together and portrayed their policies as identical.

O’Rourke tries to inspire Democratic voters Uwald shot Sign up with Abbott Abortion ban This is no exception in rape or incest cases.

Voters are deeply divided on abortion. Roughly equal proportions either support a law guaranteeing nationwide access to legal abortion or oppose it. But 8 in 10 voters said legal abortion should be allowed if the pregnancy was the result of rape or incest, and their support was broadly split between Abbott and O’Rourke.

O’Rourke said the stakes in the game became clear this summer when a gunman entered Rob Elementary School and killed 19 children and two teachers. The shooting, one of the deadliest classroom attacks in U.S. history, continues a string of grim mass shootings in Texas, where Abbott and Republicans have loosened gun laws and lifted restrictions on concealment. Pistol background check.

The parents of some of the Uvalde victims supported O’Rourke and lashed out at Abbott in the campaign and in TV commercials. But even in Uwald, Abbott easily carried the surrounding counties with more than 60% of the vote.

If Abbott serves another full term in 2026, he will serve as governor for 12 years, second only to Rick Perry, who has been in office for 14 years.

They have witnessed an era of explosive growth in Texas, which has added nearly 4 million people since 2010, more than any other state. Hispanics accounted for half of the growth, accelerating the demographic changes Democrats have long believed would ultimately transform Texas.

But Abbott’s wife Cecilia, Texas’ first Hispanic first lady, doesn’t see such a political reckoning in the future.

In Dallas, Danette Galvis, 48, voted for Abbott, saying she likes the work he does.In her opinion, Abbott Shipping migrants to other Democratic-led cities “It’s more about the message he’s trying to get across than hurting anything or anyone.”

“We were kind of under attack just because we were at the border,” Galvez said.

Paul J. Weber, Associated Press

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