Candidates seeking to file applications outside of lobby hours should contact the Elections Division at 512-463-5650.

ICYMI: Secretary Pablos Addresses Opening Session of 85th Texas Legislature

�In this, the dawn of the 21st century, Texas is the place to be.�

January 10, 2017
Contact: Sam Taylor
Secretary Pablos addresses the 85th Legislature
Texas Secretary of State Rolando Pablos address
the 85th Legislative Session

AUSTIN, TX – Texas Secretary of State Rolando Pablos addressed the opening session of the 85th Texas Legislature this week, encouraging lawmakers to work on behalf of all Texans to ensure the continued prosperity of the Lone Star State.

Watch a video of Secretary Pablos’ address.

Secretary Pablos’ Full Remarks:

It is a tremendous honor to gavel in the 85th Legislative Session, and assume an office first held by the great Stephen F. Austin.

I am extremely grateful to Governor Abbott for his trust and confidence in me to execute the duties of this office.

I would also like to express my appreciation to outgoing Secretary of State, Carlos Cascos, and thank him for his service to our state.

Today, ladies and gentlemen, you have answered the call to serve. Collectively, you have descended on this hallowed chamber to represent the interests of nearly 28 million Texas from 254 distinctly diverse counties.

Texans have always answered the call to serve, no matter how high the price, since the time William Barret Travis drew “a line in the sand.”

Whether on fields of battle, in boardrooms and in classrooms, in houses of faith, or through charitable giving, Texans have long embraced their civic duty to serve their community. And as you accept the challenges of service over the next 140 days – and beyond – I encourage you to always remember this: Texas leads, others follow.

Travel the world and tell them you are from Texas, and they will have a distinct image in their mind. They will know the Lone Star State. They will sense your pride. They will understand what you are made of and will wish they, too, lived here.

But Texas is so much more than cowboy hats, oil wells, and pickup trucks. Yes, our rural communities are the backbone of our great state. Our farmers and ranchers give so much of themselves, and of their bounty.

But we are also an urban state – home to the arts, to high-tech jobs, world-class medical centers, top multinational corporations, and hip restaurants.

We not only drill for oil, but harness the wind, and we welcome more Californians to their new home than any other state.

In this, the dawn of the 21st century, Texas is the place to be, and it is the great men and women in these chambers who chart the course for this great state.

What happens in Texas, the world’s 10th largest economy, leaves a powerful impression on other economies around the globe – from Canada and Colombia to Japan and Singapore to Belgium and the Netherlands, and especially our friends in Mexico – our largest trade partner – whose relationship serves as a force-multiplier for Texas’ economic success.

Our rightful place on the international stage is, in fact, center stage.

And you, today, hold the key to this continued success.

The momentum for our state’s continued achievement is fueled by your decisions.

You arrive here today with unique perspectives and, in some cases, passionate differences.

I know that every one of us will respect those differences with the purpose of finding common ground in order to advance the common good.

We may have different ways of getting there, but we all have a common objective: to keep Texas the land of opportunity – a place that rewards hard work, one that develops talent, one that attracts investment, where a vision can become reality.

I ask one thing of you today: please ensure that you will always put Texas, and Texans, first. And not stand just with the powerful, but on behalf of the powerless.

Like Travis at the Alamo, I ask that you draw a line in the sand in defense of this state we love and its people: our seniors, our disabled, and especially the youngest generation.

I would like to close by telling the story of one of those young Texans who is with us today. He, along with his parents and high school principal, helped me gavel in this session.

On the outside, he looks like any other high school senior preparing for his last semester, but Coby Shorter IV has a story that defies the odds. You see, during the spring of his freshman year, he was involved in a major accident on the road just outside the family farm – a tragic event that left him fighting for his life.

While Coby could have used this incident as an excuse to give up, he accepted the challenge of learning to walk again, enduring 19 surgeries, returning to and excelling in school, and giving back to his community and to those who helped save his life.

Coby is an inspiration to all who know and love him. Will you please help me recognize and congratulate Coby for the courage and determination he has demonstrated at such an early age.

But the simple fact is, ordinary Texans do extraordinary things every day, making this Texas we love a truly special place.

It is their interests we serve. It is their lives we must honor. It is their future we must advance.

Thank you, and may God bless you and continue to give you the courage and determination to fight for Texas.