On Tuesday night, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott secured the Republican nomination for governor for a third term. 

Abbott’s path to the nomination was significantly different compared to years past; for the first time since announcing his candidacy for governor in 2013, he faced serious opposition from his own party.

Overall, seven opponents filed to run against Abbott, including former Republican Party of Texas Chairman Allen West, former State Sen. Don Huffines, and media personality Chad Prather.

The electoral threat of potentially losing the Republican nomination spurred an onset of action from Abbott as he was forced to contend with criticism from the right. These included executive orders seeking to end mask and vaccine mandates, directing the Department of Family Protective Services to investigate child gender modification procedures as child abuse, and a focus on the southern border in the form of Operation Lone Star.

Abbott gave a victory speech at a campaign event in Corpus Christi.

“Tonight, Republicans sent a message. They want to keep Texas on the extraordinary path of opportunity that we have provided over the past eight years,” said Abbott. “A Texas where working families can flourish under the ninth largest economy in the world. A Texas where students are prepared and inspired for college or a career. A Texas that supports our law enforcement officers who keep our communities safe. A Texas where we protect your constitutional rights and individual liberties. A Texas where everyone has a path to prosperity.”

Huffines was the first candidate to concede in the race, but he declared “victory on the issues.”

“For over a year, our campaign has driven the narrative in Texas and forced Greg Abbott to deliver real conservative victories like the Texas Heartbeat Act, constitutional carry, and protecting children from abusive transgender transitioning,” said Huffines. “When I entered the race, Greg Abbott opposed the border wall, was silent on sex-change surgeries for kids, allowed [critical race theory] in Texas classrooms and agencies, and even refused to stop vaccine mandates. Our campaign forced him to address each of these issues and deliver outcomes that will help everyday Texans. Though I will not be contesting the outcome of this election, I will not be going away. I will always fight to defend the God-given rights and liberties of Texans.”

Prather told Texas Scorecard that voters had made a choice “to embrace big government and California-type trends.”

”I pray that we can survive another term with RINO leadership and Texas Republican priorities being ignored. Congratulations Governor Greg Abbott. We will support you against the likes of Robert O’Rourke but we will hold you accountable. The days of reckless leadership without constitutional and legislative responsibility must become a thing of the past. May God bless Texas,” Prather added.

Abbott will face former congressman and failed senatorial and presidential candidate Robert Francis “Beto” O’Rourke in the general election on November 8.

Brandon Waltens

Brandon serves as the Senior Editor for Texas Scorecard. After managing successful campaigns for top conservative legislators and serving as a Chief of Staff in the Texas Capitol, Brandon moved outside the dome in order to shine a spotlight on conservative victories and establishment corruption in Austin. @bwaltens