The Midday Brief: Top Texas Headlines for July 18, 2011

Barbara Cargill, State Board of Education.
Barbara Cargill, State Board of Education.

Your afternoon reading:

“Barbara Cargill, R-The Woodlands, might find her leadership skills tested during her first meeting as chairwoman if anti-evolution members try to push 'intelligent design' materials into public school biology classes when the board meets this week.” Education board’s new boss criticized, San Antonio Express-News

“But the main drivers of growth in Texas — our mild climate, inexpensive cost of living and low-tax, anti-regulatory policies — were in place long before Governor Perry took office and will remain long after he’s gone. The policies have helped generate economic growth, but there’s a tradeoff.” The Minimum Wage Trap, The New York Times

"After the 'cocaine cowboys,' the Colombians were the big guys, the cocaine source and suppliers, who dominated the drug trade in Florida," Gonzalez said. 'The Cuban gangs were the distributors. After that, the focus changed to the Mexican cartels.'" Cartel drug trafficking reminiscent of '80s Miami, El Paso Times

“Armando Vera, a naturalized U.S. citizen who was born in Mexico, formed the group at the urging of McAllen Tea Party leaders looking to reach the Valley’s predominant demographic group in Spanish, the native language for many of them.” Pharr pastor forms nation's first Hispanic Tea Party, The McAllen Monitor

“The former Astros star and current Rangers CEO experienced discomfort early Sunday morning at his home in Georgetown, Texas.” Nolan Ryan hospitalized, set to undergo heart tests today, Houston Chronicle

New in the Texas Tribune:

“The latest series of our data applications helps you identify when important debates occurred by visualizing the frequency of keywords.” Interactive: Visualizing Key Debates in the Lege

“Giuliani told Candy Crowley he hasn't ruled out running for president again and pointed to his leadership experience after 9/11 as one reason he would be an effective commander-in-chief. He also said Texas Gov. Rick Perry is among the ‘one or two’ candidates yet to declare.” Video: Giuliani Thinks Perry Will Enter GOP Primary

“Movant desires to die with his boots and spurs on and without his face covered, for he wishes to see the lights go out at high noon," Pippin, a 27-year-old diabetic cowboy, wrote in an unusual and melodramatic motion he filed June 30 in the Hardeman County District Court.” Cattle Rustler Asks Texas Court to Hang Him High

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