Glenn Interviews Texas Gov. Greg Abbott: The Best and Most Efficient Governor EVER

Glenn has lived all over the United States, and he calls his current governor the best.

"There's been no governor that I think is as good as Greg Abbott. And, yeah, you can throw up Sam Houston. Whatever," Glenn said.

Not only that, Gov. Abbott is extremely efficient, having proposed to his wife on Valentine's Day 30 years ago, which earned the admiration of Glenn's co-host.

"That's really smart. And you combined two present opportunities, so you don't have to do it twice. You've got the engagement and Valentine's Day . . . that's efficiency. That's how he's running the state --- efficiently," Co-host Stu Burguiere said Tuesday on The Glenn Beck Program.

The governor joined the program to discuss his recent State of the State address, where Texas stands on a Convention of States and his thoughts on the Lone Star State ever hosting another Super Bowl.

Listen to this segment from The Glenn Beck Program:

GLENN: We've said it before. We'll say it again. The best governor I have ever had in my life, and I've lived all over the country. There's been no governor that I think is as good as Greg Abbott. And, yeah, you can throw up Sam Houston. Whatever. Meet Greg Abbott, the governor of Texas.

Greg, how are you, sir?

GREG: Doing good. I'm perplexed. I didn't know you knew Sam Houston.

GLENN: I didn't. But we're doing the history of Texas on radio in a few weeks. So we've been doing a lot of research on him. And I don't think he had anything on you.

PAT: He was pretty awesome though.

GLENN: He was pretty awesome. But you are -- you've assembled a great team around you, and Texas is in good hands.

GREG: Texas in great shape.

Before we get going, let me follow up on that last caller. Today is Valentine's Day. Let me give a shout-out. Happy Valentine's Day to my wife. It was on this day 30 years ago she and I got engaged.

GLENN: How did you do it?

PAT: Nice. What a romantic.

GREG: Did it on the River Walk in San Antonio, Texas.

STU: That's really smart. And you combined two present opportunities, so you don't have to do it twice. You've got the engagement and Valentine's Day. You can just combine -- that's efficiency. That's how he's running the state, efficiently.

GLENN: Efficiently. Really smart. So, Greg, we want to talk to --

GREG: She and I also have the same birthday. So that takes care of that also.

STU: Nice.

GLENN: Holy cow.

We wanted to talk to you about a couple of things. Let's start with the most pressing. And that is the bathroom situation with the NFL, where they say that if we don't correct our bathroom situation, we'll never get another Super Bowl.

GREG: The NFL is walking on thin ice right here. The NFL needs to concentrate on playing football and get the heck out of politics.

PAT: That's for sure.

GREG: Let's go back, first of all, to their last previous political statement they made, which is allowing NFL football players to kneel during the national anthem. These are people, especially with the quarterback for then San Francisco, taking a knee when the national anthem is being played. He's getting paid $100 million to play a game, complaining that he is oppressed. He needs to be standing up in respect for the men and women who died fighting in the United States military so he had the freedom to go out and play a game and get paid $100 million.

I got to tell you, I cannot name or even count the number of Texans who told me that they were not watching the NFL. They were protesting the NFL this year because of the gross political statement allowed to be made by the NFL by allowing these players who are not oppressed, who are now almost like snowflake little politicians themselves, unable to take the United States national anthem even being played. And now, most recently, for some low-level NFL adviser, to come out and say they are going to micromanage and try to dictate to the state of Texas what types of policies we're going to pass in our state, that's unacceptable.

We don't care what the NFL thinks. And certainly what their political policies are. Because they are not a political arm of the state of Texas or the United States of America. They need to learn their place in the United States, which is to govern football, not politics.

GLENN: But tell us how you really feel.

The amazing thing is --

GREG: It's a family show, so I've toned it down a little.

GLENN: I know. I was watching the Super Bowl. And if you look at the way they image themselves as all about fathers and sons and the rah-rah America and the troops and everything else -- they know who their audience is. Their audience is middle America. And yet it seems as though they're on this suicidal bent as a corporation.

GREG: For one -- listen, there's something easier here. And that is, if the NFL -- this is a heartfelt policy of theirs, if they really want to do something about, then they can install all these special bathrooms that they want that live up to their policy, as opposed to trying to dictate to states what types of policies they have. You know me, Glenn, I sued the federal government 31 times because I thought the federal government, a governmental body, by the way, was wrongly trying to tell Texas what to do.

Who is the NFL thinking they can tell Texas what to do politically?

GLENN: Let's switch gears. We have so much to talk to you about. Let me switch to sanctuary cities.

The Dallas -- what is it, the Dallas commissioner -- Dallas County courts or something came out.

JEFFY: Dallas County.

GLENN: And said they support the -- the sanctuary cities. We had the mayor of Irving on yesterday. She was outraged by it.

What's going to happen to sanctuary cities in Texas?

GREG: First, we need to understand that these are people -- unlike the NFL, these are people in Dallas County -- same thing happened in Travis County. For your listeners, Travis County is the county seat for Austin, Texas, which is a very liberal bastion.

GLENN: Uh-huh.

GREG: These are people who take an oath of office to uphold the Constitution and laws of the United States, as well as the state of Texas. And they are violating their oath of office by refusing to follow federal immigration law that dictates two local officials, two state officials, that they must cooperate with ICE and the immigration services. And if they fail to do so, they're in violation of federal law.

And so it is abhorrent that we have local officials saying that they are not going to apply the law.

Listen, they don't have the ability to pick and choose which laws they will apply. And hence, I believe that it should be a criminal penalty. I believe that they should be defunded. I believe that they should be fined for this conduct.

Now, Glenn, I've already started this process. Because when the Travis County sheriff announced a sanctuary city policy by refusing to comply with immigration services, by refusing to provide them information about who they were holding, these dangerous criminals behind bars, I as the governor of Texas, defunded governor grants to Travis County, to the tune of more than $1.5 million. If this in Dallas turns out to be more than talk and turns out to be action, I will defund them also from the governor's grants, which will add up to -- I haven't seen the amount. But I would assume it's going to be more than Travis County. It should be more than millions of dollars.

But we already -- I called sanctuary city policies, an emergency out in Texas. And the Texas senate has already passed out my bill out of their chamber. And what does is exactly what I said, is it imposes criminal penalties. It imposes fines to the tune of 25,000 a day, every single day a violation is taking place, as well as defunding the sheriff's offices or any other offices from any funds that they receive from the state of Texas.

And so we are going to bring the hammer down on anyone who thinks they can impose a sanctuary city policy.

Now, let's tie this back to football. This last fall, there was a man who was leaving a Dallas Cowboy game, going back home. He stopped in Cedar Hill, which you may know -- your listeners may know. It's a suburb of Dallas. And he stopped at a gas station there. And he was brutally murdered by an illegal immigrant who went on a crime spree. This illegal immigrant had been arrested multiple times. Deported three times. Was back into the state illegally. And we have to send a message that we are not a welcoming state for these repeat violators, these people who have been repeatedly deported, these people who now turn into mass murderers because this guy -- the murderer, Juan Rios, not only killed this man in Dallas County, but killed someone else and went on a crime spree across the entire state of Texas before he was arrested. We don't want any Kate Steinles in the state of Texas. And we are going to make sure that our law enforcement officials are going to follow and apply existing immigration law. And if they fail to do so, there will be heavy consequences to be paid.

GLENN: We're talking to America's governor, Governor Greg Abbott, from the great state of Texas.

Governor, you know and I know that the vast majority of Democrats may disagree with us on things. But they're not radicals. They're not -- they don't want to see the end of the country or anything like that. But there are radicals, on both sides, that do want chaos.

And if -- just play this out for me. If -- if we defund the -- the cities, and there are those radicals that want that to happen, and crime starts to rear its ugly head and things start to get bad, Donald Trump has already said he'll send in federal troops. We don't want federal troops in our cities.

How do you balance this? How do you make sure that the cities are -- are running and the people are safe?

GREG: Well, it goes back to the -- if you would, the tax structure of the state of Texas. We won't fully defund the cities. A lot of their funding -- really, the majority of their funding comes from local and property taxes as well as sales taxes. So it's not going to defund their operations. What it will do is it will put such heavy financial consequences on them that one of two things will happen, either one, they will go ahead and say, "Listen, the penalty is too much. I'm going to overturn our sanctuary city policies." Or two, the local citizens are going to be fed up with the irresponsibility, lawlessness, of these local officials, and they will kick them out of office. But a third is, because of the criminal penalties, we will put these noncompliant sheriffs behind bars. They will lose their job, and they will be followed up by somebody who will apply the law. If they don't apply the law, we will put them behind bars also.

So, in other words, we can continue going through the turnstile of sheriffs who refuse to comply with the law, until we find one who does comply with the law. And at that point in time, they will be in compliance. They won't be losing any money.

GLENN: All right. Let's go to -- let's go to something that I feel strongly about. And I'm afraid that there are a lot of Republicans now that have Donald Trump in office, they will say, "Oh, things aren't so bad. We don't really need this."

And that is the Convention of States. In your state of the state speech, you spent a good deal of time talking about the Convention of States and why we need this.

Are we going to -- are we going to be added to the list? Are we going to be a state that is involved in the Convention of States?

GREG: There is such a strong movement in the state of Texas right now. I began talking about this when I wrote a book on it and started touring around the state of Texas talking about it. And there are well over 100,000 -- I'm told, hundreds of thousands of activists. Not just people who have supported -- but people who have actively engaged in the political process, who are taking the capital by storm. Educating the members of the House and Senate, that it needs to be done.

Remember this, and that is last session we had here in the state of Texas, the Texas House of Representatives did adopt the Convention of States platform. We -- at that time, we were only a vote or two short in the Texas senate. I think we will have enough votes in both the House and the Senate to finally get this done and make Texas a leader in this process of the Convention of States.

Let me follow up as kind of a comment you were suggesting about Trump. And that is, remember this, for your audience, the problem that we are in now nationally is not a problem caused by one president alone. Yes, Barack Obama did more than his share to depart from the Constitution. But this is something that's been going on for almost a century now.

It goes back well before FDR who was one of the leaders of getting away from the Constitution.

But it goes back into the 1800s. So it's been a process of erosion. Just the way you would see a river erode over time. Our Constitution has been eroded over time. So this wasn't a problem caused by one president. It cannot be fixed by one president. Simply because Donald Trump is in there, doesn't mean our constitutional flaws are going to be fixed.

Let me give you the most easiest example. And that is, I know you and many of your listeners will know the Tenth Amendment. We want a Tenth Amendment to be upheld. And that is that all powers not delegated to the federal government and the Constitution are reserved to the state and sort of the people. Well, there's a problem in the way that provision is written. It doesn't specifically say who gets to enforce the Tenth Amendment. All we want to do is to add a clause or a sentence that says, "States have the power to enforce the Tenth Amendment." That's easy. That's common sense. That's something we can get 38 states, which is three-fourths of the states to agree upon. And it restores power to the states to enforce the Tenth Amendment.

STU: Hmm.

GLENN: We would like to have you back on. I know you have to go because you're a governor I guess of an important state. But we'd love to have you on again. Because there are just so many things that need addressing. And you distill them so well. Texas Governor Greg Abbott, we appreciate your time, sir. Thank you so much.

GREG: My pleasure. Thank you, Glenn.

GLENN: You bet. You know, it's interesting to me. And I wish we had time to talk to him about what's happening in California. California, remember, they all made fun of us for saying we wanted to secede. Texas wanted to secede. And now, Slate and Atlantic and all these left magazines are all saying --

PAT: That's not so outrageous. That's not so bad.

JEFFY: Why it makes sense for California to leave.

PAT: Yeah.

GLENN: No. What makes sense is the Convention of States so you as a state are not being held with a gun to your head, depending on who is elected.

We've got to stop this, now. Because I've got news for you. Trump can reverse all this stuff. You think the other guy is not going to come in and reverse all this stuff when they get in, of course.

PAT: And how about a constitutional amendment to take away some of that power.

GLENN: Yes.

PAT: Take that power away from some of these people. And just term limit them.

STU: Yes.

On Wednesday's TV show, Glenn Beck sat down with radio show host, author, political commentator, and film critic, Michael Medved.

Michael had an interesting prediction for the 2020 election outcome: a brokered convention by the DNC will usher in former First Lady Michelle Obama to run against President Donald Trump.

Watch the video below to hear why he's making this surprising forecast:

Use code BECK to save $10 on one year of BlazeTV.

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To enjoy more of Glenn's masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.

On Thursday's "Glenn Beck Radio Program," BlazeTV's White House correspondent Jon Miller described the current situation in Virginia after Gov. Ralph Northam (D) declared a state of emergency and banned people carrying guns at Capitol Square just days before a pro-Second-Amendment rally scheduled on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Jon told Glenn that Gov. Northam and the Virginia Legislature are "trying to deprive the people of their Second Amendment rights" but the citizens of Virginia are "rising up" to defend their constitutional rights.

"I do think this is the flashpoint," Jon said. "They [Virginia lawmakers] are saying, 'You cannot exercise your rights ... and instead of trying to de-escalate the situation, we are putting pressure. We're trying to escalate it and we're trying to enrage the citizenry even more'."

Glenn noted how Gov. Northam initially blamed the threat of violence from Antifa for his decision to ban weapons but quickly changed his narrative to blame "white supremacists" to vilify the people who are standing up for the Second Amendment and the Constitution.

"What he's doing is, he's making all all the law-abiding citizens of Virginia into white supremacists," Glenn said.

"Sadly, that's exactly right," Jon replied. "And I think he knows exactly what he's doing."

Watch the video to catch more of the conversation below:

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Ryan: Trump Louisiana Finale

Photo by Jim Dale

Part One. Part Two. Part Three.

At the end of Trump rallies, I would throw on my Carhartt jacket, sneak out of the press area, then blend in with everyone as they left, filing out through swinging doors.

Often, someone held the door open for me. Just 30 minutes earlier, the same person had most likely had most likely hissed at me for being a journalist. And now they were Sunday smiles and "Oh, yes, thank you, sir" like some redneck concierge.

People flooded out of the arena with the stupidity of a fire drill mishap, desperate to survive.

The air smacked you as soon as you crossed the threshold, back into Louisiana. And the lawn was a wasteland of camping chairs and coolers and shopping bags and to-go containers and soda cans and articles of clothing and even a few tents.

In Monroe, in the dark, the Trump supporters bobbled over mounds of waste like elephants trying to tiptoe. And the trash was as neutral to them as concrete or grass. They plodded over it because it, an object, had somehow gotten in their way.

It did not matter that they were responsible for this wreckage.Out in the sharp-edged moonlight, rally-goers hooted and yapped and boogied and danced, and the bbq food truck was all smoke and paper plates.

They were even more pumped than they had been before the rally, like 6,000 eight year olds who'd been chugging Mountain Dew for hours. Which made Donald Trump the father, the trooper, God of the Underworld, Mr. Elite, Sheriff on high horse, the AR-15 sticker of the family.

Ritualistic mayhem, all at once. And, there in Louisiana, Trump's supporters had gotten a taste of it. They were all so happy. It bordered on rage.

Still, I could not imagine their view of America. Worse, after a day of strange hostilities, I did not care.

My highest priority, my job as a reporter, was to care. To understand them and the world that they inhabit. But I did not give a damn and I never wanted to come back.

Worst of all, I would be back. In less than a week.

Was this how dogs felt on the 4th of July? Hunched in a corner while everyone else gets drunk and launches wailing light into the sky? configurations of blue and red and white.

It was 10:00 p.m. and we'd been traveling since 11:00 a.m., and we still had 5 hours to go and all I wanted was a home, my home, any home, just not here, in the cold sweat of this nowhere. Grey-mangled sky. No evidence of planes or satellites or any proof of modern-day. Just century-old bridges that trains shuffled over one clack at a time.

And casinos, all spangles and neon like the 1960s in Las Vegas. Kitchy and dumb, too tacky for lighthearted gambling. And only in the nicer cities, like Shreveport, which is not nice at all.

And swamp. Black water that rarely shimmered. Inhabited by gadflies and leeches and not one single fish that was pretty.

Full of alligators, and other killing types. The storks gnawing on frogs, the vultures never hungry. The coyotes with nobody to stop them and so much land to themselves. The roaches in the wild, like tiny wildebeests.

Then, the occasional deer carcass on the side of the road, eyes splayed as if distracted, tongue out, relaxed but empty. The diseased willows like skeletons in hairnets. The owls that never quit staring. A million facets of wilderness that would outlive us all.

Because Nature has poise. It thrives and is original.

Because silence is impossible. Even in an anechoic chamber, perfectly soundproofed, you can hear your own heartbeat, steady as a drum. A never-ending war.

I put "Headache" by Grouper on repeat as we glided west. We were deadlocked to asphalt, rubber over tarface.

And I thought about lines from a Rita Dove poem titled "I have been a stranger in a strange land"

He was off cataloging the universe, probably,
pretending he could organize
what was clearly someone else's chaos.

Wasn't that exactly what I was doing? Looking for an impossible answer, examining every single accident, eager for meaning? telling myself, "If it happens and matters the next year, in America, I want to be there, or to know what it means. I owe it to whoever cares to listen."

Humans are collectors and I had gone overboard.

Because maybe this wasn't even my home. These landmarks, what did they mean? Was I obvious here? When I smiled, did I trick them into believing that I felt some vague sense of approval? Or did my expressions betray me?

Out in all that garbage-streaked emptiness — despite the occasional burst of passing halogen — I couldn't tell if everything we encountered was haunted or just old, derelict, broken, useless. One never-ending landfill.

Around those parts, they'd made everything into junk. Homes. Roads. Glass. Nature. Life itself, they made into junk.

I cringed as we passed yet another deer carcass mounded on the side of the road.

As written in Job 35:11,

Who teaches us more than the beasts of the earth and makes us wiser than the birds in the sky?

Nobody. Look at nature and you feel something powerful. Look at an animal, in all of its untamable majesty, and you capture a deep love, all swept up in the power of creation. But, here, all I saw were poor creatures who people had slammed into and kept driving. Driving to where? For what reason? What exactly was so important that they left a trail of dead animals behind them?

So I crossed myself dolorously and said an "Our Father" and recited a stanza from Charles Bukowski's "The Laughing Heart"

you can't beat death but
you can beat death in life, sometimes.
and the more often you learn to do it,
the more light there will be.

Out here, nothing but darkness. Needing some light, by God. Give me something better than a Moon that hides like an underfed coward.

Jade told me about some of the more traumatic things she'd seen while working at the State Fair.

"Bro, they pull roaches out of the iced lemonade jugs and act like nothing happened."

"All right but what about the corn dogs?"

"You do not want to know, little bro."

She looked around in the quiet. "Back in the day, the Louisiana Congress refused to raise the drinking age from 18 to 21," she said. "They didn't want to lose all that drunk gambler money. So the federal government cut off funding to highways."

We glided through moon-pale landscape for an hour before I realized what she had meant. That there weren't any light poles or billboards along the road. Nothing to guide us or distract us. Just us, alone. And it felt like outer space had collapsed, swallowed us like jellybeans.

Like two teenagers playing a prank on the universe.

In the cozy Subaru Crosstrek, in the old wild night, brimming with the uncertainty of life and the nonchalance of failure, we paraded ourselves back to Dallas. Alive in the river silence that follows us everywhere.

New installments come Mondays and Thursdays. Next, the Iowa caucuses. Check out my Twitter. Email me at kryan@blazemedia.com

The Iowa primary is just around the corner, and concerns of election interference from the last presidential election still loom. Back in 2016, The Associated Press found that a majority of U.S. elections systems still use Windows 7 as an operating system, making them highly susceptible to bugs and errors. And last year, a Mississippi voter tried multiple times to vote for the candidate of his choice, but the system continuously switched his vote to the other candidate. It's pretty clear: America's voting systems desperately need an update.

That's where blockchain voting comes in.

Blockchain voting is a record-keeping system that's 100% verifiable and nearly impossible to hack. Blockchain, the newest innovation in cybersecurity, is set to grow into a $20 billion industry by 2025. Its genius is in its decentralized nature, distributing information throughout a network of computers, requiring would-be hackers to infiltrate a much larger system. Infiltrating multiple access points spread across many computers requires a significant amount of computing power, which often costs more than hackers expect to get in return.

Blockchain voting wouldn't allow for many weak spots. For instance, Voatz, arguably the leading mobile voting platform, requires a person to take a picture of their government-issued ID and a picture of themselves before voting (a feature, of course, not present in vote-by-mail, where the only form of identity verification is a handwritten signature, which is easily forgeable). Voters select their choices and hit submit. They then receive an immediate receipt of their choices via email, another security feature not present in vote-by-mail, or even in-person voting. And because the system operates on blockchain technology, it's nearly impossible to tamper with.

Votes are then tabulated, and the election results are published, providing a paper trail, which is a top priority for elections security experts.

The benefits of blockchain voting can't be dismissed. Folks can cast their vote from the comfort of their homes, offices, etc., vastly increasing the number of people who can participate in the electoral process. Two to three-hour lines at polling places, which often deter voters, would become significantly diminished.

Even outside of the voting increase, the upsides are manifold. Thanks to the photo identification requirements, voter fraud—whether real or merely suspected—would be eliminated. The environment would win, too, since we'd no longer be wasting paper on mail-in ballots. Moreover, the financial burden on election offices would be alleviated, because there's decreased staff time spent on the election, saving the taxpayer money.

From Oregon to West Virginia, elections offices have already implemented blockchain voting, and the results have been highly positive. For example, the city of Denver utilized mobile voting for overseas voters in their 2019 municipal elections. The system was secure and free of technical errors, and participants reported that it was very user-friendly. Utah County used the same system for their 2019 primary and general elections. An independent audit revealed that every vote that was cast on the app was counted and counted correctly. These successful test cases are laying the groundwork for even larger expansions of the program in 2020.

With this vital switch, our elections become significantly more secure, accurate, and efficient. But right now, our election infrastructure is a sitting duck for manipulation. Our current lack of election integrity undermines the results of both local and national elections, fans the flames of partisanship, and zaps voter confidence in the democratic system. While there's never a silver bullet or quick fix to those kinds of things, blockchain voting would push us much closer to a solution than anything else.

Chris Harelson is the Executive Director at Prosperity Council and a Young Voices contributor.