There has been much anticipation in Texas regarding Governor Abbott sitting on the sidelines thus far during this primary.
With a Trump rally being held in Edinburg, TX, this weekend, Abbott finally decided to jump in and endorse Trump.
Edinburg, TX, is less than 20 miles from the U.S. Mexico border, so Trump picked the town to hold his rally and offer up his immigration agenda.
During the rally, Trump hammered Biden and declared that he has created the "most unsecure border in the history, I believe, really, of the world."
A Trump spokesman added:
"Stopping the invasion at our southern border is an urgent national security necessity and one of President Trump's top priorities. For that reason, he has laid out – in his own speeches and Agenda 47 platform – by far the most detailed program for securing the border, stopping illegal immigration, and removing those who should never have been allowed into our country in the first place."
The Biden campaign was quick to respond, slamming Trump's immigration policies:
"Simply put, Donald Trump is going after immigrants, our rights, our safety and our democracy. And that is really what's on the ballot next year."
There has been considerable speculation about where Abbott would land in this election.
Would he sit on the sidelines, support a fellow Republican governor, or go with Donald Trump?
Abbott, who was endorsed very early in the last election cycle by Trump, returned the favor on Sunday.
"Today, I am proud to endorse Donald J. Trump for President.
"Now more than ever, America needs a President who will secure the border and prioritize national security. President Trump is the clear choice to get the job done."
Today, I am proud to endorse Donald J. Trump for President.
Now more than ever, America needs a President who will secure the border and prioritize national security.
President Trump is the clear choice to get the job done. pic.twitter.com/gvM7sQH41Q
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) November 19, 2023
The reaction to the Abbott endorsement was far from positive.
Texas, by and large, has been considered Trump country by the pundits, but there is also a serious resistance to Trump among Texas Republicans right now. It is not enough to cost Trump the state in a primary, but the number is significant enough to hurt him in a general election if they do not give up their allegiance to DeSantis.
If you check out that post on X and look at the comments, the response by Abbott's followers was overwhelmingly negative.
This is likely because Texas has been trending blue since the 2016 election, with Democrats clearly targeting the state to flip it during a presidential election.
The move to blue is about far more than Trump, however, as Texas has very much become a transient state, with people relocating from states around the country, with a significant boost from former California residents fleeing Democrat policies.
Yet, oddly enough, they continue to vote Democrat when they move to Texas, which makes no sense at all.
In the most recent CWS Research poll, Trump is up 59-24. In the latest YouGov poll, Trump is up 66-25. Another poll was rather interesting, showing that Hispanic voters are very interested in DeSantis.
The Texas Hispanic Policy Foundation poll only had Trump up 57-36, still a significant lead, but far better results for DeSantis.
So, it would still appear that Trump will win Texas fairly easily in a crowded field, but if this is a head's up, that number will tighten up a bit.
Regardless, the real worry from Trump's perspective is whether DeSantis supporters will pull the handle for Trump or they will skip voting in the presidential election. If the latter happens, believe it or not, the Democrats could take Texas in this election.
DeSantis supporters are getting angrier by the day with the attacks against DeSantis, which have now started to become memes against his supporters. They are angry people, very angry, and the overall narrative online is that they will never vote for Trump.
It is comments and posts like this that are getting under their skin…
President Trump mocks Ron DeSanctimonious for stumbling on the debate stage in his high heels. pic.twitter.com/JJlvDU9HAc
— Trump War Room (@TrumpWarRoom) November 11, 2023
That is Trump playing up to his base, which loves the whole "height" attack against DeSantis, but again, Trump needs to attract voters outside his base to win a general election.
Then there is this email allegedly sent out by Trump's campaign…
MAGA has nothing on Ron. They can show me a thousand polls, but his campaign speaks for itself.
They’re losing and the desperation for the Iowa situation is notable. When you have a defeated candidate doing this stuff, you have to ask yourself,
are those people advising him… pic.twitter.com/Yl3gSfr7jm
— 🇵🇷Boricua Conservative🐊 (@BoricuaGOP) November 20, 2023
Again, his base loves it, but DeSantis supporters and moderates are banging their heads up against a wall trying to figure out why something like this would be sent out.
Trump needs to fix that because DeSantis has enough supporters around the country that would seriously hurt Trump in a general election.
That, however, does not appear to be Trump's strategy, as the MAGA PAC just did a massive $30 million ad spend, with about $23 million going for negative ads against DeSantis.
Trump really needs to shift gears, focus more on policy and Biden, and stop going after DeSantis, or it could really hurt him in a presidential general election.
His campaign, of course, would blame DeSantis supporters for sabotaging Trump. Still, they would really need to look at the reason why DeSantis supporters sat on the sideline, and that would be because of the attacks against their candidate and now the supporters of Ron DeSantis by the Trump online team.