Gov. Abbott spends election night congratulating Republican primary winners


Texas Governor Greg Abbott calls Linda Koop to congratulate her on an apparent win in the Republican primary in Texas HD 102. (KXAN Photo/ Alyssa Goard).

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Even though Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is not on the ballot this year, he worked late into election night Tuesday. Abbott and his campaign team spent Monday night watching the primary results roll in and congratulating the winners of different Republican races.

In a year when Texas Democrats have ambitions of flipping historically red house seats and ousting Sen. John Cornyn, Abbott is putting his weight behind making sure that doesn’t happen.

As Abbott’s team refreshed election totals, he worked his way through a long list of names, calling to offer congratulations to candidates who appeared to have won their races.

He left a message for State Rep. Drew Darby (R-San Angelo) who is running for re-election in House District 72.

“Don’t know the final score yet, but I know it’s a win,” the governor said on a voicemail message. “I am proud of you out there campaigning hard and we’re looking forward to working with you all the way through November and then after that.”

Next, Abbott called Linda Koop, who is running for Texas House District 102 in the Dallas area and spoke with Koop on the phone.

Koop held a seat in the Texas House for two terms and is looking to win that seat back after losing an election in 2018.

“We’re going to win back yours and at least one more in Dallas County,” Abbott told Koop.

Abbott said he has been making these calls offering congratulations to Republicans in all types of races across Texas, from Texas House races to U.S. Senator John Cornyn’s race for re-election.

The Texas governor even said he gave President Donald Trump a call today to “congratulate him personally on what he’s doing tonight.” A spokesperson for Abbott says President Trump answered the call and thanked Abbott for reaching out.

“We’ve been out campaigning, we’ve been at events working on voter turnout, my team here has been going to knock on doors, making phone calls,” Abbot said, explaining how actively involved his team has been with Republican primary races this year.

“We’re calling those who have got across that finish line, we are gonna keep Texas as red as my shirt,” Abbott said, motioning to the crimson polo he was wearing.

Abbott, who was re-elected in 2018, won’t be running for re-election again until 2022.

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