It came to my attention that Governor Abbott’s office released a letter to the new Prime Minister of Japan, Yoshide Suga. The Governor’s letter wasn’t simply congratulatory—it was a complete endorsement of the Texas High-Speed Rail project. The letter contained several inaccuracies about Texas Central Rail. Among them were assertions that the rail had obtained the necessary permits to begin construction and that there was widespread public support and momentum behind the project.
Both statements could not be further from the truth. First, Texas Central Rail does NOT have any construction approval or permits from the Federal Railroad Association and the Surface Transportation Board. Secondly, the public widely OPPOSES Texas Central Rail’s proposed project. Since it was announced, thousands of rural and suburban Texans have publicly opposed the project, and the Texas Legislature has enacted reforms to prevent the project from using state funds. These bills were even signed into law by the Governor himself. It is disappointing to see that the Texas Central Rail company’s obvious falsehoods have made their way into the Governor’s office.
I, alongside a coalition of rural and suburban legislators, have added our names to the letter correcting the inaccuracies regarding the rail and, more importantly, requesting that Governor Abbott reverse his position on the project and “Fully Support” the property rights of the very Texans who have supported him in the past.
Since receiving additional information from all affected parties, Governor Abbott has since released an addendum to his original letter saying he will re-evaluate this matter and that the private property rights of Texans need to be fully respected. The full statement is as follows “From the beginning of this project, the Governor made clear that he could support this project if, and only if, the private property rights of Texans are fully respected and no state funding is used. The Governor’s team has learned that the information it was provided was incomplete. As a result, the Governor’s Office will re-evaluate this matter after gathering additional information from all affected parties.”
Below, you can see the Governor’s initial letter to the Prime Minister of Japan and our coalition’s letter opposing the project.