Photo: Dan Patrick
Conservative Dan Patrick, winner of the Republican nomination for lieutenant governor of Texas, reached out to the Hispanic community in his victory speech and avoided mentioning the criticism of hidden immigration that was the backbone of his campaign over the past few months.
Garnering more than 65 percent of the votes, Patrick overwhelmingly won the runoff on Tuesday and unseated incumbent Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, who with just 34.8 percent of the votes will leave office at the end of this year after serving for 12 years.
Patrick vowed to reach out to the Hispanic and African American communities.
The only reference to immigration in his speech Tuesday night was a promise to protect the border, and he focused on discussing how he intended to deal with water, transportation and state debt issues once he takes office.
Patrick said that his triumph is also a win for the Tea Party.
Dewhurst defended before his supporters in Houston the work he had done in more than a decade in office and said that Texas “is a better place” for it.
He also railed against a “tsunami of untrue attacks” during the primary campaign.
GOP gubernatorial candidate Greg Abbott expressed his willingness to work together with the other candidates of his party to secure a big Republican victory in the November election.
Abbott’s Democratic rival, Wendy Davis, sought to tie him to the extreme views espoused by Patrick, a former talk radio host.
In Texas, the races for governor and lieutenant governor are separate.
“When will Greg Abbott and Dan Patrick appear on stage together to highlight their shared values opposing equal pay for women when they do the same work as men, referring to our immigrant communities as the ‘third world’ and defending deep cuts to public schools that led to teacher layoffs and overcrowded classrooms?,” Davis spokesman Zac Petkanas asked.
Patrick will face off in the November election against state Sen. Leticia Van De Putte, a Latina from San Antonio.