Gov. Greg Abbott has not announced whether he will seek a second term as governor next year, but if money talks, his fundraising for the last half of 2016 suggests the answer is an unambiguous “yes.”
Texans for Greg Abbott, his campaign organization, announced Thursday that it had raised $9 million between July 1 and Dec. 10, bringing its cash on hand to $34.4 million, an enormous sum even by Texas standards.
“Thanks to the support of so many Texans, our message of individual liberty and economic prosperity is heard not just in the Lone Star State, but in states across the nation,” Abbott said in a statement. “As a result, businesses continue to move, start and grow here, creating good-paying jobs for hardworking Texans and their families. With new supporters joining our movement every day, I will continue the fight to expand the values that have made our state the greatest beacon of freedom in the country, creating an even brighter future for all.”
The fundraising reports are not due with the Texas Ethics Commission until next week, but candidates with good numbers often like to get the news out early.
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick announced Monday that he raised almost $5 million in the last half of 2016, and had $13.6 million for his re-election campaign in 2018. That news came at a news conference at which Patrick made clear that he was running for re-election, an early announcement intended to squelch continuing speculation that he might challenge Abbott for governor. He said he would only consider running for governor if Abbott were not running.
In its statement, Texans for Abbott noted that, “for the second reporting period in a row, the campaign received a donation from all 254 Texas counties. Additionally, the campaign added more than 9,400 new donors this period, bringing the total number of new donors to Texans for Greg Abbott in 2016 to 16,000.”