Texas Governor Greg Abbott tried to scare Republican constituents into voting during the March primaries, the Dallas Morning News reported Monday, by sending out a mass email to supporters saying that Democrats’ turnout should “shock every conservative to their core.”
It echoes comments made by Texas Senator Ted Cruz earlier this month, when he warned donors that Republicans could get “obliterated at the polls” by Democrats who would “crawl over broken glass to vote.” In his email, Abbott referred to the left-leaning voters as a “liberal wave” that is “hit[ting] Texas.”
Democrats’ turnout during their primaries—where over 151,000 people across 15 counties voted—has increased 69 percent since 2014, while Republican turnout has simultaneously decreased 20 percent. About 135,070 people Republicans have voted in their primary races so far this month.
The partial text of Abbott’s email, from the Dallas Morning News:
“I’ll be blunt: Democrat voter turnout is surging statewide during Early Voting,” reads the email, using bold and italicized red print. The email states that the last time Democratic primary voters came out so strongly was in the 1990s, during a gubernatorial election cycle, and that Democrats are flipping seats in special elections across the country in Republican strongholds.
“We’ve seen a surge of liberal enthusiasm in deep red states like Georgia, Alabama, and Oklahoma,” the email says. “We had always hoped the liberal wave would never hit Texas, but these Early Voting returns aren’t encouraging so far.”
Early voting in the state runs through Friday, March 2.