One Immigration Bill May Have Bucked the Trend

Wokers along stretch of highway at US290/US 183 April 2011
Wokers along stretch of highway at US290/US 183 April 2011

A bill recently signed into law gives law enforcement agencies and lawyers more power to fight wage theft, to which illegal immigrants often fall victim. As Erika Aguilar of KUT News reports, even in a session dominated by efforts to enact strict immigration legislation, the bill met little resistance.

Michael Williams Soliciting Endorsements for CD-33

Railroad Commissioner Michael Williams announces U.S. Senate candidacy at TribLive on January 27, 2011.
Railroad Commissioner Michael Williams announces U.S. Senate candidacy at TribLive on January 27, 2011.

Former Railroad Commissioner Michael Williams, who has been running a GOP primary campaign to succeed Kay Bailey Hutchison in the U.S. Senate, has begun actively soliciting endorsements for the congressional seat he intends to seek instead, according to an email obtained Monday night by the Tribune.

Texas Senate Approves GOP-Drawn Congressional Map

Sen. Kel Seliger, R-Amarillo, discusses congressional redistricting with Sen .Royce West, D-Dallas, (not shown) on the Senate floor Monday, June 6, 2011.
Sen. Kel Seliger, R-Amarillo, discusses congressional redistricting with Sen .Royce West, D-Dallas, (not shown) on the Senate floor Monday, June 6, 2011.

A new redistricting map, drawn to promote and protect Republican interests in the U.S. Congress, sailed out of the GOP-led state Senate Monday. The map, approved along strict party lines, would give Republicans a decent chance of retaining every congressional seat they now hold plus a new one they don't.

 

Switch to Outcomes-Based Higher Ed Funding Taking Time

Commissioner of Higher Education Dr. Raymund Paredes sits in the Senate gallery awaiting the end of the session on May 30, 2011.
Commissioner of Higher Education Dr. Raymund Paredes sits in the Senate gallery awaiting the end of the session on May 30, 2011.

During the regular session, Gov. Rick Perry’s top legislative priority for higher education was the implementation of a new financing system that rewards universities for graduating more students, not just for getting students into classes. Why didn't that happen?

For Texas' Big Three, Session Ends as it Started

Texas' three leaders (l to r), House Speaker Joe Straus, Gov. Rick Perry and Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst appear at the Texas Capitol for their traditional post-session press conference on May 31, 2011.
Texas' three leaders (l to r), House Speaker Joe Straus, Gov. Rick Perry and Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst appear at the Texas Capitol for their traditional post-session press conference on May 31, 2011.

If you wanted to know where the governor, the lieutenant governor and the speaker of the House would stand at the end of the legislative session, you could have seen it all months ago.

World's Shortest Effective Filibuster

Texas Weekly

The Legislature finished on Monday and came back on Tuesday to do in a few days what they could not accomplish in 140

Filibuster Propels Wendy Davis Into Spotlight

Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, during her filibuster at the end of the the 82nd legislature on Sunday, June 3, 2011. The action, in opposition to $4 billion in cuts to education, tipped lawmakers into an immediate special session.
Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, during her filibuster at the end of the the 82nd legislature on Sunday, June 3, 2011. The action, in opposition to $4 billion in cuts to education, tipped lawmakers into an immediate special session.

State Sen. Wendy Davis' controversial decision to torpedo the 82nd Legislative session with a filibuster has catapulted the Fort Worth Democrat into the spotlight, which she has seized to try to mobilize the state’s downtrodden and outnumbered Democrats.

TribWeek: Top Texas News for the Week of 5/30/11

Aaronson and Grissom on a freshman lawmaker who didn't mind making waves, Aguilar on E-Verify's new lease on life, Galbraith on the state's plodding progress toward solar power, Hamilton on Warren Chisum's exit, Philpott on the remapping of Lloyd Doggett's district, Ramsey on a proposed change to ethics laws for Texas pols, Ramshaw on efforts by the state to take control of Medicaid and Medicare, Root on why a Rick presidential bid shouldn't be underestimated, M. Smith on the unraveling of school finance legislation and Tan and Dehn on the highs and lows of the 82nd legislative session: The best of our best content from May 30 to June 3, 2011.