Greg Abbott in 2017 Governor's State of the State speeches


On Abortion: Protect unborn children and promote a culture of life

Protecting Texans means protecting the most vulnerable--the unborn. I welcome any legislation that protects unborn children and promotes a culture of life in Texas.

I thank the bishops of Texas for showing respect for the unborn by offering to bury fetal remains at no cost. It demonstrates the dignity and reverence that every child's life deserves. That is why I support legislation to codify this dignity for every child in the future.

Every child--born and unborn--deserves dignity. The butchering of unborn babies for trade in the open market is barbaric. I want legislation on my desk that criminalizes the sale or donation of baby body parts.

We must also do more to help the children that mothers bring into this world. That's why I'm committed to advancing adoption services and developing programs to support mothers who embrace the blessing of a child's life.

Source: 2017 State of the State address to Texas Legislature Jan 31, 2017

On Crime: Make it a hate crime to target uniformed police officers

Unbelievably, last year ambush-style killings of police increased more than 150 percent. These murders had one thing in common: The victims were killed because of the uniform they wear.

Texas will not tolerate attacks on law enforcement officers. We will rise up as a state in support our law enforcement. I want legislation that increases penalties and makes it a hate crime for criminals who target peace officers simply because of their uniform.

Source: 2017 State of the State address to Texas Legislature Jan 31, 2017

On Education: Fully fund GURI: Governor's University Research Initiative

While so many colleges are competing for 5-Star recruits to athletic programs, Texas is leading the way to attract 5-Star recruits to our academic programs. The Governor's University Research Initiative you funded last session brought internationally renowned researchers to Texas.

As one example, Dr. Richard Miles--a member of the prestigious National Academy of Engineering--is leaving Princeton to join the Aerospace Engineering Department at Texas A&M. His work places Texas A&M and the State of Texas at the forefront of laser and optical technology that can enhance national security. Research like this spurs economic development and helps create jobs.

We must continue our mission to do more than just prepare Texas for the next two years. We also need to put our state on the path for national and international prominence for the next 20 years. GURI does just that. And must be fully funded again.

Source: 2017 State of the State address to Texas Legislature Jan 31, 2017

On Families & Children: Reform Child Protective System or more children will die

The primary goal of government is to keep its citizens safe and secure. That goal is even more important when it comes to our children. You will cast thousands of votes this session. Few will involve life or death decisions. Your vote on CPS is one of them. Last year, more than 100 children died in our Child Protective System. You can vote to end that. We can reform the system so that no more children die in it.

We need more workers, with better training, smarter strategies and real accountability to safeguard our children. While improving child safety in CPS, we must also remain vigilant in protecting parental rights. We must remember that the best place for a child, if at all possible, is with their parents. We also need to develop a Network of Nurture. We need a legion of families in every county who can open their homes and open their hearts to fostering our vulnerable children. Do not underfund this rickety system only to have it come back and haunt you.

Source: 2017 State of the State address to Texas Legislature Jan 31, 2017

On Foreign Policy: Texas is exceptional; we'd be world's 10th largest economy

Today, I'm proud to report the State of Texas is exceptional. Since my first State of the State two years ago, more kids are graduating from high school, we doubled the number of Tier One universities and more Texans have jobs today than ever before.

Sure, we had a downturn in the oil patch like we have almost every decade. And like every other time, Texas has come roaring back. Last year when oil hit bottom, Texas still added more than 200,000 new jobs.

Our national and international rankings continue to rise. We are now second in the number of Fortune 500 companies. And with your help, we'll soon be No. 1. If Texas were its own country we would now be the 10th largest economy in the world. Our economy is larger than Australia, Canada and even Russia.

Texas is the Lone Star State for a reason: We stand apart as a model for the rest of the nation. It's our privilege, our duty to preserve the cause of liberty. Let's keep Texas the most exceptional state in America.

Source: 2017 State of the State address to Texas Legislature Jan 31, 2017

On Immigration: Enforce against sanctuary cities or more Texans will die

It is our burden to deal with the consequences of the federal government not securing the border. Texas can't change federal immigration laws. What Texas can do is to enforce existing law. There are consequences--deadly consequences--to not enforcing the law.

Juan Rios is a criminal alien who had been arrested in Texas multiple times and deported three times. Last September, he went on a crime spree across Texas, killing two people & kidnapping another. It's a tragedy repeated too often in Texas. It is time for Texas to take a stand.

Some law enforcement officials in Texas are openly refusing to enforce existing law. That is unacceptable. Elected officials don't get to pick and choose which laws they obey. To protect Texans from deadly danger, we must insist that laws be followed. This is the session we will ban sanctuary cities. I'm declaring this an emergency item.

Source: 2017 State of the State address to Texas Legislature Jan 31, 2017

On Jobs: No state deductions of union dues on paychecks

We should end the practice of government deducting union dues from the paychecks of employees. Taxpayer money shouldn't be used to support the collection of union dues. Sen. Huffman and Rep. Sarah Davis have a good bill that addresses this problem. Let's get it to my desk.
Source: 2017 State of the State address to Texas Legislature Jan 31, 2017

On Tax Reform: The only good tax is a dead tax

Another way for Texas to grow jobs is by cutting taxes and regulations on business. Ben Franklin said the only two certainties in life are death and taxes. As far as I'm concerned, the only good tax is a dead tax. We must continue to cut the business franchise tax until it fits in a coffin.

Speaking of taxes, Texans are being crushed by property taxes. Their property tax bills often increase far faster than household income. No government should be able to tax people out of their homes. No government should be able to disregard the private property rights of its citizens.

Texas should not stand for it. We must remember: Property owners are not renting their land from the city. That is why we need property tax reform that prevents cities from raising property taxes without voter approval. We need serious property tax reform with a real revenue cap.

Source: 2017 State of the State address to Texas Legislature Jan 31, 2017

On Technology: Innovation renaissance: biotech, wearable tech, clean tech

We all know that Texas leads the nation in areas like oil and gas. Importantly though, Texas is in the middle of an innovation renaissance that weans our economy off of energy.

Biotech. Defense tech. Wearable tech. Clean tech. Technologies developed in Texas are changing the world in which we live. The Dallas, Houston and Austin areas are now known as three of the world's premiere "knowledge capitals." And get this: Midland beats the San Francisco area in the percentage of jobs created by startups. And, we continue to cultivate the next generation of entrepreneurs and innovators.

For example, Texas now has more public high schools ranked in the top 100 than any other state. We have the fourth highest high school graduation rate in America. We are second among Hispanic and African-American students, and first among economically disadvantaged students. And the No. 1 public high school in America is in Dallas Independent School District.

Source: 2017 State of the State address to Texas Legislature Jan 31, 2017

The above quotations are from 2017 Governor's State of the State speeches.
Click here for other excerpts from 2017 Governor's State of the State speeches.
Click here for other excerpts by Greg Abbott.
Click here for other excerpts by other Governors.
Please consider a donation to OnTheIssues.org!
Click for details -- or send donations to:
1770 Mass Ave. #630, Cambridge MA 02140
E-mail: submit@OnTheIssues.org
(We rely on your support!)

Page last updated: Feb 24, 2017