Texas Tribune Festival: Dan Patrick answers questions about upcoming Texas legislative session

Paul Cobler

Update (10:15 a.m.): Texas Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick spoke in a one-on-one Saturday morning at the Texas Tribune Festival. 

The panel, moderated by Texas Tribune executive editor Ross Ramsey, centered around the upcoming 85th Texas legislative session that will begin in the spring of 2017.

Patrick spoke on a wide variety of topics including the transgender bathroom debate, Ted Cruz's long-awaited endorcement of Donald Trump and public school funding in Texas.

Patrick also made several controversial comments about the Dallas police shooting that occured in July earlier this year.

"If the Black Lives Matter hadn't had that march, those five police officers would still be alive," Patrick said.

Throughout the one-on-one, Patrick made several comments that received audible gasps from the crowd.

Patrick, a staunch conservative, also spoke in favor of cutting back on Texas public school funding, both in higher ed and on lower levels.

"We owe it to you not to waste your money," Patrick said soon after saying professor tenure should be cut. "But we will take care of our schools. We are funding them."

Patrick sited the "pile of money" that UT and Texas A&M has throught oil and gas drilling on University lands in West Texas as a reason to cut state funding to the Universities.

Patrick also spoke against transgender bathrooms during his one on one at Homer Rainey Hall, located across the South Mall from Mezes Hall, one of 30 buildings at UT that include gender inclusive bathrooms.

"I don't want a 16-year-old boy showering with 16-year-old girls," Patrick said.

Patrick, the Texas chairman for Donald Trump's presidential campaign, also voiced approval of Ted Cruz's long-awaited endorcement of of the Republican Party nominee.

"I think it was the right decision," Patrick said. "You support your nominee."

Despite his approval, Patrick said he wished Cruz's endorcement had come sooner.

Patrick previously was the Texas chairman for Cruz's campaign.

Original story: We're live blogging Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick's one-on-one at the 2016 Texas Tribune Festival Saturday morning. The event is s a part of the festival's 85th Legislature track, focussing on the upcoming legislative session that Patrick oversees. The event will be moderated by Texas Tribune Executive Editor Ross Ramsey.

Follow us her and Paul Cobler (@PaulCobler) on Twitter for live updates.