The Midday Brief: Top Texas Headlines for May 14, 2010

Your afternoon reading:

“Founding Father Thomas Jefferson should be restored to the social studies curriculum standards covering the Enlightenment period, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Bill White said in a formal comment to the State Board of Education, which is scheduled to take final action next Friday.” — White weighs in as history debate heats up, Texas Politics

“Yes, the Texas Council of Engineering Companies has a self-interest in roadbuilding, needless to say, but so does everyone who drives on Texas roads. The point of the TCEC statement, as the headline says, is that there is a cost to doing nothing.” — Engineers’ group criticizes inaction on transportation, BurkaBlog

Rick Perry's decision to keep a $23,500 campaign contribution from a major donor charged by the state with fraud isn't the first time the Republican governor has had to make a choice about tainted political donations. Perry says he'll keep, at least for now, the money he received in February from TaxMaster's CEO Patrick Cox of Houston. Republican Attorney General Greg Abbott filed suit Thursday against Cox and TaxMasters, accusing the tax-representation firm of defrauding customers.” — Rick Perry and tainted campaign contributions, TrailBlazers

“GOP Gov. Rick Perry got a hug from Democratic Sen. Leticia Van de Putte of San Antonio at a college fair in the Alamo City. Since he was in the neighborhood, Van de Putte then invited Perry to fund-raiser hosted by H-E-B CEO and President Charles Butt at his home. ‘He made a comment that the Democratic-Republican divide is not as big as the Longhorn-Aggie divide,’ Van de Putte, a University of Texas alum, said of Perry, whose blood runs maroon.” — They hugged. He went to her fund-raiser. They're Gov. Perry and Sen. Van de Putte, Texas Politics

New in the Texas Tribune:

Don’t look now, but the Texas GOP, the party of budgetary teetotalers, has been piling up debt like a college kid with his first credit card — and that has put chair Cathie Adams in the hot seat a month before she seeks reelection at the state Republican convention. — Debt Becomes Her?

For the ninth event in our TribLive series, I interviewed Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst about the budget shortfall, state-federal tensions, immigration, why he doesn't release his taxes and his future plans. — A Conversation with David Dewhurst

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