Pro-life Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott made it official today, saying he will run for governor and seek the GOP nomination to replace pro-life Governor Rick Perry, who is not planning to run again next year.
Prior to assuming the office of attorney general, Abbott was a justice on the Texas Supreme Court and was appointed by former Texas governor and President George W. Bush.
“When it comes to our freedom and our future, I will never – I will never stop fighting,” he said during an announcement in San Antonio.
At age 26, Abbott was struck by a falling oak tree that injured his back as he jogged by. He has used a wheelchair ever since and has become an eloquent pro-life advocate — speaking up for both the disabled and the unborn.
The accident serves as a reminder that regardless of someone’s circumstances, he or she deserves a chance at life, Abbott has said.
“As I laid there motionless on the ground, gripped with pain, as helpless as a child in the womb, I knew my life had changed forever,” he said at the National Right to Life convention in June.. “Some people think it’s easy to write off the lives of the disabled or the different. But every day, God reminds us that all life has value, no matter the form.”
During the speech, the Dallas Morning News said “Abbott lauded Texas’ strict abortion laws, such as requiring a minor to receive parental consent before an abortion and requiring doctors to perform sonograms before abortions. The crowd gave him a standing ovation when he described the Legislature’s efforts to pull taxpayer funding from Planned Parenthood’s women’s health clinics.”
CNN had more on Abbott’s announcement:
Democrats have not yet put up a candidate for an office they have not held in nearly 20 years. Ann Richards, who left in 1995, was the last Democratic governor of the state.
Many have encouraged state Sen. Wendy Davis to run. Her filibuster of anti-abortion legislation that is expected to become law this week drew wide attention to the legislation and her as a political figure.
Democrats were quick to blast Abbott as an out-of-touch conservative.
“Greg Abbott’s entrance into the race for Governor in Texas is another step backward for a national Republican Party trying to gain relevance outside of its narrow, right-wing base,” the Democratic National Committee said.
Perry announced earlier this month that he will not seek re-election to a fourth term. Perry, who is pro-life, left the door open to a second presidential bid in 2016 after his first attempt fizzled.
“The time has come to pass on the mantle of leadership,” he said at a rally in San Antonio. “Today, I’m announcing I will not seek reelection as governor of Texas.”
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“After January of 2015, new chapters will be written. New leaders will write them,” Perry said. “But the focus must remain on the greatest state in the nation and opportunity for her people’
“I make this announcement with the deepest sense of humility and appreciation for the trust the people of this state have given me, and knowing I will truly miss serving in this capacity – the greatest job in modern politics,” Gov. Perry said. “Our responsibility remains to the next generation of Texans, who will inherit a state of our making. We alone are responsible for the kind of Texas that will greet them. It is my hope that tomorrow’s leaders build on our legacy of opportunity so Texans born into any circumstances have a chance to experience the American Dream.”
Abbott, a rising Republican Party star, who is pro-life on abortion, is the leading contender with Perry not running. Abbott already has millions in the bank for a statewide bid.