Texas governor mulls for school choice, property tax cuts in third inaugural address

In his inauguration speech on Tuesday in Austin, Texas Governor Greg Abbott hinted at a push for school vouchers and more parental control over curriculum as part of an attempt to “empower parents.”

Speech In Front Capitol

Abbott, a Republican who defeated former Rep. Beto O’Rourke to win a third term in November and is thought to be a potential 2024 presidential candidate, gave a speech in front of the Capitol in Austin that was primarily a look to the future in an effort to contrast Texas with the rest of the country.

At the beginning of a legislative session where Abbott and state lawmakers will determine what to do with a $33 billion budget surplus, he also used his third inaugural speech to preview a campaign for school vouchers, property tax cuts, and more in the coming months.

Texas, according to Abbott, is a state that offers “freedom and opportunity” without the “high taxes, red tape, and cumbersome regulations” of states governed by Democrats. He praised Abbott’s eight-year conservative track record and that of the state’s Republican-majority legislature.

Despite not providing specifics, Abbott hinted at the desire for a voucher system in language similar to those of prior Republican governors.

Best For Their Child

The freedom to select the education that is best for their child, according to Abbott, belongs to the parents.

Additionally, he asserted that schools should be used for “teaching, not indoctrination,” and he claimed that lately, they have been “pushing social agendas.”

In order to get students back to understanding the fundamentals, Abbott argued that there is a need to modify the curriculum. “We also need to provide parents the means to question it if it doesn’t live up to expectations,” he said.

Abbott omitted any mention of Uvalde, where a shooter in May 2022 murdered two instructors and 19 pupils at an elementary school.

He committed to “prioritize safeguarding children and staff” throughout the state’s ongoing legislative session, which runs until May.

“Students who require mental health treatments must receive them. Every morning when parents send off their kids at school, they need to know that they are safe, Abbott said. “We won’t adjourn this session until our schools are safer.”

10-Year Minimum Penalties

In addition, he demanded “mandated terms on criminals found with weapons,” echoing Lt. Governor Dan Patrick’s request for 10-year minimum penalties.

Additionally, Abbott blasted President Joe Biden for how his government has handled the US-Mexico border and praised his own initiatives to erect a wall.

The Biden Administration is “absent in action,” said Abbott, “and Texas is utilizing every instrument at our disposal to safeguard our state.” “We are erecting a wall, sending troops from the Department of Public Safety and the Texas National Guard to enforce the law, and going after the Mexican criminal gangs who smuggle people, guns, and narcotics into our state.”

Other Reports, Natural Gas-Fired Power Plants

In order to fulfill the rising demand, Patrick stated that the state will construct new natural gas-fired power facilities.

The grid will be strengthened this session as we started the last session by adding additional megawatts of thermal electricity.

During the next State of the State Address next month, the governor will outline his priority legislation, commonly known as emergency issues.

The 30 most significant laws will shortly be made public by the lieutenant governor, and the 20 most significant measures in the House will be made public by Speaker Dade Phelan (R-Beaumont).