Julián Aguilar Reporter

Julián Aguilar reports on politics and border affairs from the Texas-Mexico border. His focuses include immigration reform and enforcement, voter ID, international trade, border security, and the drug trade. His political coverage has included local, legislative and congressional races in Texas, as well as local and national elections in Mexico. Before joining the Tribune, he was a freelance writer for the Fort Worth Weekly; a government and crime reporter for the Laredo Morning Times; and a political writer for the Rio Grande Guardian. A native of El Paso, he has a bachelor's degree in English from the University of Texas and a master's degree in journalism from the Frank W. Mayborn Graduate Institute of Journalism at the University of North Texas.

Recent Contributions

A Rare Win for Democrats

Protesters with American flags line the hallway outside the Senate chamber protesting HB12 the so-called "sanctuary cities" bill on May 25, 2011.
Protesters with American flags line the hallway outside the Senate chamber protesting HB12 the so-called "sanctuary cities" bill on May 25, 2011.
Texas Weekly

Call it the biggest consolation prize in recent history of the state legislature. Democrats, outnumbered in both chambers, actually won the battle over immigration after losing out to the Republican supermajority on abortion and Voter ID legislation and deep cuts to public services, mainly health care and education.

The Final Push: A Special Session Update

The House chamber below a mostly empty gallery during the final days of the special session on June 27, 2011.
The House chamber below a mostly empty gallery during the final days of the special session on June 27, 2011.

Lawmakers must wrap up the special session on Wednesday, with a few outstanding priorities left to tackle. Here's a rundown of where the Texas Legislature stands going into the second-to-last day of the special session.

Updated: Sanctuary Cities Bill Clinging to Life

Protesters with signs and American flags line the hallway outside the Senate chamber on sanctuary cities bill HB12 on May 25, 2011.
Protesters with signs and American flags line the hallway outside the Senate chamber on sanctuary cities bill HB12 on May 25, 2011.

State Rep. Burt Solomons says at least one version of the contentious sanctuary cities bill will advance out of committee today, despite the morning cancellation of a House State Affairs meeting.

Sanctuary Cities Legislation Running Out of Time

Demonstrators stand in front of the Texas Capitol on Feb. 22, 2011 to show their opposition to immigration legislation.
Demonstrators stand in front of the Texas Capitol on Feb. 22, 2011 to show their opposition to immigration legislation.
Texas Weekly

Precious days are dwindling away in the first-called special session of the state legislature, leading to speculation that one of the most divisive issues of the regular and special session, the “sanctuary cities” legislation, may not make the deadline.

Sanctuary Cities Bills On Hold, On the Clock

Republican State Reps.  Byron Cook (l), R-Corsicana, Burt Solomons (c), R-Carrollton, and Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton, listen to a point of order on HB12 sanctuary cities bill on May 6, 2011.
Republican State Reps. Byron Cook (l), R-Corsicana, Burt Solomons (c), R-Carrollton, and Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton, listen to a point of order on HB12 sanctuary cities bill on May 6, 2011.

A decision on the whether to advance the state’s pending “sanctuary cities” legislation will not be made until Monday, leaving less time for lawmakers to consider the bills before Wednesday’s special session deadline.

Latino Leaders Give Perry Lukewarm Response

Governor Rick Perry speaks at the National Association of Latino Elected Officials (NALEO) convention in San Antonio on June 23, 2011.
Governor Rick Perry speaks at the National Association of Latino Elected Officials (NALEO) convention in San Antonio on June 23, 2011.

Texas Gov. Rick Perry made no mention of the federal government’s overreach or the violence he says is spilling across the state’s border during a brief and tense public appearance today before hundreds of Latino elected officials.