Politics

Beto O’Rourke phone calls Gov. Abbott a ‘thug’ at SXSW amid heated race for Texas governorship


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Texas Democratic gubernatorial prospect Beto O’Rourke spoke at SXSW (South by Southwest) on Saturday, a audio festival and media party in Austin, Texas.

O’Rourke is dealing with present Republican Texas Governor Greg Abbott in a bid for governor, who he slammed as a “thug” in his SXSW dialogue.

“He is a thug, he is an authoritarian,” O’Rourke said of Abbott on Saturday.

“We’ve gotta get past this person, this extremism, these fringe politics that are so deeply hurting men and women in the condition of Texas,” O’Rourke stated of Abbott.

TEXAS Primary RACES TO Observe: Huge NAMES VIE FOR GOVERNOR, Lawyer Typical

In this Sept. 7, 2019 file photo, Democratic presidential candidate former U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke, D-Texas, speaks during the New Hampshire state Democratic Party convention, in Manchester, NH. He exited the presidential race on Friday after raising approximately $17 million for his campaign. 

In this Sept. 7, 2019 file picture, Democratic presidential prospect previous U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke, D-Texas, speaks for the duration of the New Hampshire state Democratic Bash conference, in Manchester, NH. He exited the presidential race on Friday immediately after elevating close to $17 million for his campaign. 
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O’Rourke also accused Abbott of having a “crazed fixation” on transgender youngsters, indicating that the governor was failing to bolster means and protections for sexual intercourse-trafficked kids.

“Individuals exact same young children who had been rescued from sexual intercourse traffickers, are now staying trafficked for intercourse by their guardians in the state of Texas,” O’Rourke claimed. “The governor understood there was a difficulty for 4 months, and he did not do sh–.”

O’Rourke, a former Democratic candidate in the 2020 Democratic presidential most important, is managing for governor of Texas and sailed via his party’s main at the begin of the thirty day period. 

The gubernatorial applicant also took Abbott to activity at SXSW for the state’s unpreparedness for the winter season electricity outages that swept throughout the condition final yr.

“The lights went out, and the heat failed. And the water stopped flowing since the pipes froze as effectively. And persons missing their lives as a consequence,” O’Rourke stated, heading on to accuse Abbott of getting in mattress with gasoline providers unwilling to spend in temperature-proofing the state’s energy infrastructure.

FILE - In this March 16, 2020, file photo, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott speaks during a news conference in San Antonio. Gov. Abbott, in defending Texas' near-ban on abortions, says women and girls who are raped won't be forced to give birth because the new law

FILE – In this March 16, 2020, file picture, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott speaks all through a news convention in San Antonio. Gov. Abbott, in defending Texas’ in close proximity to-ban on abortions, claims girls and ladies who are raped will never be pressured to give delivery for the reason that the new regulation “provides at minimum 6 months for a man or woman to be ready to get an abortion.”
(WHD Photo/Eric Homosexual, File)

However, pressed for proof on the “straight line” connections amongst Abbott and power companies – exclusively Vitality Transfer Companions, with CEO Kelcy Warren – O’Rourke softened his rhetoric a bit. 

“The facts that I laid out, I feel, stand for on their own. And people are welcome to occur to diverse conclusions if they want to,” O’Rourke claimed. “But I assume we have a pretty apparent case of a governor who stands with the businesses and the superior-greenback donors.”

O’Rourke is presently concerned in a lawsuit submitted by Warren for defamation in excess of claims that O’Rourke “falsely accused” him of “extortion” and “bribery,” in accordance to court files.

“[Warren] is finding filthy, illegally rich off the all-natural methods of this state, and then charging us a top quality 200 situations the likely level just to continue to be heat in our own households when the temperature drops,” O’Rourke said. 

“And Abbott rather of keeping his accountable and accountable and getting that dollars back again —  and guaranteeing that he serves some time or there is some justice for what he has accomplished to the individuals of Texas –takes a 1 million dollar campaign contribution from him.”

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, with his wife Cecilia, right, and daughter Audrey, left, arrives for a primary election night event, Tuesday, March 1, 2022, in Corpus Christi, Texas. (WHD Photo/Eric Gay)

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, with his wife Cecilia, appropriate, and daughter Audrey, remaining, arrives for a principal election evening occasion, Tuesday, March 1, 2022, in Corpus Christi, Texas. (WHD Photograph/Eric Gay)
(WHD )

WHD News has arrived at out to Abbott for comment on O’Rourke’s statements Saturday.

In an really close race, O’Rourke narrowly lost his run for U.S. Senate against Sen. Ted Cruz in 2018, prior to his unsuccessful 2020 presidential bid.

O’Rourke built national headlines with declarations like “hell indeed, we are heading to just take your AR-15” in his marketing campaign, which he has considering the fact that softened.

The Democrat mentioned previously this year that he has “no fascination in using” assault weapons from gun proprietors, a complete wander-back of his formerly brazen and unpopular statements on Texas gun legal guidelines.

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“I’m not interested in taking just about anything from anyone,” O’Rourke reportedly stated to reporters in Tyler, Texas. “What I want to make absolutely sure that we do is protect the Second Amendment. I want to make confident that we guard our fellow Texans much better than we’re doing suitable now.”

He doubled down on individuals reviews during his SXSW remarks, not instantly committing to having guns out of the fingers of owners.

O’Rourke also grew to become 1 of the 1st prominent Democrats to publicly condition opposition to the training of critical race idea in educational institutions Friday.

WHD News’ Jessica Napoli, Rémy Numa and Houston Keene contributed to this report.

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