Texas Gov. Abbott takes shot at liberal California, New York in annual address

The two states 'use heavy-handed government tactics that drive away businesses'

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott took a shot at the Democratic strongholds of California and New York, arguing on Monday that they enacted policies that pushed away business.

"States like California and New York," Abbott said during his State of the State Address, "they use heavy-handed government tactics that drive away businesses. The Texas Legislature, on the other hand, has built a framework that helps small businesses thrive."

His comments came as Texas saw an influx of businesses and new residents. Big names -- Oracle, Charles Schwab, and Hewlett-Packard -- are moving to headquarters from California to Texas. At the end of last year, Tesla CEO Elon Musk also revealed he had left California for the lone star state.


For 2019, Forbes ranked Texas as the second-best state for business, while New York came in 28th and California in 31st. The Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council ranked Texas first in its index for the most entrepreneur-friendly states. Meanwhile, California was ranked as the second-worst and New York as the fourth worst. It was a similar story or the tax environments small businesses faced.

The offices for Govs. Gavin Newsom and Andrew Cuomo did not immediately respond to Fox News' requests for comment.

"Texas remains ... the land of unmatched opportunity and a comeback is already materializing," Abbott said, alluding to the impact of the coronavirus shutdowns.

He pointed to months of consecutive job growth in the state, including the 64,000 total non-agricultural jobs added in December.

Dee Dee Myers, Senior Advisor to the Governor and Director of the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) responded on Tuesday in a statement to Fox News.


"Before the COVID-19 pandemic, California saw 10 years of consecutive job growth, across multiple sectors, and record low unemployment," said Myers.

"We remain the fifth largest economy in the world, #1 in Bloomberg’s Innovation index, and home to 20 of Fortune's top 100 fastest growing companies in the world -- in fact, eight of the top 25 are California companies. We are innovators at heart, and so is our economy. California’s entrepreneurial spirit is still alive and well, despite this pandemic. And as we rebuild our economy, while continuing to protect the public health, we are confident that the future will still happen here, in California."