SAN ANGELO, Tx (KLST/KSAN) — Energy independence and immigration were the major focus of Governor Greg Abbott’s keynote address to the 18th annual West Texas Legislative Summitt in San Angelo on Thursday, August 4, 2022, but he ended the address suggesting there may be more locations for immigrant bussing in the future.
In a speech that lasted just over half an hour, Abbott referred to Texas as an ‘economic juggernaut’ and lauded the oil production capacity of West Texas — specifically the Permian Basin. He also focused on what he called the crisis at the southern border and hinted that more locations could be added as destinations for Texas’s practice of bussing immigrants to cities in other states.
“West Texas truly does power not only the West Texas and Texas economy,” said Abbott. “It literally powers the American economy by being the home of one of the most prolific energy fields in the entire world.”
Abbott then called on Washington to use the resources of the Permian Basin to reduce US dependence on foreign oil.
“It has been West Texas that truly made America energy independent,” said Abbott. “But that was before Washington and the coastal elites declared a war on the oil and gas industry.”
Abbott criticized what he said was an increasing dependence on foreign sources of oil from countries like Saudi Arabia and said President Biden’s meeting with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was “perplexing.”
“We saw this week the fruits of that meeting,” said Abbott. “It was a very paltry increase in the amount of oil that they were going to produce.”
Abbott then turned his focus to immigration and what he says is a crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border, saying that it was the deadliest border crossing in the world.
“Just two years ago we had the lowest number of border crossings in decades and the most secure border that we’ve seen in our adult lifetime,” said Abbott. “But today we have the highest number of border crossings ever.”
Abbott also touched on the practice of sending undocumented immigrants to Washington D.C. via bus, a practice that he and one other Republican Governor — Arizona’s Doug Ducey — have had in place since April.
In the wake of the bussing undertaken by Abbott and Doucey, Washington D.C. Mayor Murial Bowser asked for federal support in her call to activate the D.C. National Guard in response to the influx of people sent from Texas and Arizona. In a letter sent to the White House on July 22nd, Bowser called the influx of migrants “cruel political gamesmanship from the Governors of Texas and Arizona”
“They cannot handle the number of people coming in and all I have is bad news for them,” said Abbott. “Because there are an increasing number of buses leaving every single day going to Washington D.C and there may be some other locations on the horizon.”