20 Weeks in Texas in Which the Budget Held Sway

The 82nd Texas Legislature’s regular session ends as it started, with lawmakers arguing about a shrunken state budget and redistricting. With Republicans operating with a supermajority in the House and a commanding majority in the Senate, there was little doubt that the GOP would be able to impose its will.

What was new was the power exerted by the Tea Party movement, which helped propel dozens of new lawmakers into the Capitol to hold the line on solving the budget mess without raising significant new revenue or tapping the state’s sizable Rainy Day Fund. As a result, legislators ...

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