AUSTIN (Nexstar) — Texas Governor Greg Abbott and Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick were sworn in on Tuesday morning for their third terms in office, in a series of celebratory events throughout the day.
In his inauguration speech, Abbott touted Texas’ pro-business stance, and unveiled some plans for the state’s largest budget surplus in Texas history.
“We will use that budget surplus to provide the largest property tax cut in the Texas history,” he said Tuesday.
Abbott’s third term comes after decisively defeating Democratic challenger Beto O’Rourke in the 2022 midterm elections by 11 points. The Republican ran largely on ramping up border security, public safety and criticizing President Joe Biden on the economy and inflation.
Abbott’s speech also touched on support for police, ending “easy bail policies,” and shoring up the border against those crossing and those bringing drugs into Texas.
While the governor’s inaugural speech highlighted similar issues, it is distinctly different from the State of the State address. Tuesday’s ceremonies were largely celebratory — punctuated by the pomp and circumstance of an inauguration filled with live music, bipartisanship and Lone Star state pride.
Patrick also took his oath of office. He swiftly defeated his challenger in the election, Democratic businessman Mike Collier — securing one of the most powerful positions in Texas politics by a double-digit lead. Patrick, who presides over the Senate, exudes large influence over the policies that come out of the Texas legislature.
Inaugural events started Monday, with a Catholic Mass service at Saint Mary Cathedral downtown. A 9 a.m. prayer service began Tuesday’s festivities at the University Avenue Church of Christ. Festivities will feature a luncheon with vendors from across the state, with tents titled “A Taste of Texas” on the Capitol grounds.
The Lone Star State does not have term limits.