GOVERNMENT

Texas Governor-Elect Greg Abbott introduces Daniel Hodge as interim chief of staff who will oversee the transition team from a Perry administration to an Abbott shop.
Texas Governor-Elect Greg Abbott introduces Daniel Hodge as interim chief of staff who will oversee the transition team from a Perry administration to an Abbott shop.

At Abbott's Side, Hodge Readies for a New Role

Little known outside the halls of Texas government, Daniel Hodge, 36, has spent his entire professional career working for Greg Abbott. In so doing, he has become one of state government's more powerful behind-the-scenes figures. That's only becoming more true: He's expected to serve a key role in the incoming governor's administration.

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In San Antonio, Ambitions Rising Among Hispanic Democrats

State Sen. Leticia Van De Putte and state Rep. Mike Villarreal — both Democrats from San Antonio — will face-off in the race to become the city's next mayor.
State Sen. Leticia Van De Putte and state Rep. Mike Villarreal — both Democrats from San Antonio — will face-off in the race to become the city's next mayor.

Nothing better demonstrates San Antonio's distinction as a political springboard for Hispanic Democrats than the political turnover triggered when Mayor Julián Castro left to join the Obama administration.

The Brief: Nov. 21, 2014

President Barack Obama chastises Republicans in Congress for stonewalling his agenda in a speech July 10, 2014 at the Paramount Theater in Austin.
President Barack Obama chastises Republicans in Congress for stonewalling his agenda in a speech July 10, 2014 at the Paramount Theater in Austin.

Texas will feel more of the effects of Obama's action while a proposed overhaul of the Secure Communities programs draws bipartisan criticism.

Obama's Immigration Plan Could Affect Thousands in Texas

President Barack Obama meets with advisors in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, Aug. 4, 2014.
President Barack Obama meets with advisors in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, Aug. 4, 2014.

President Obama on Thursday said he will use his executive authority to grant millions of undocumented immigrants a work permit and a reprieve from deportation proceedings. Reactions from Republicans were swift and outraged.

 

The Brief: Nov. 18, 2014

State Board of Education Vice Chair Thomas Ratliff leafs through binders at the meeting listing proposed changes to Texas textbooks in a SBOE meeting in Austin on Monday, October 20, 2014 .Textbook publishers were invited to meeting where public concerns regarding their textbooks were discussed.
State Board of Education Vice Chair Thomas Ratliff leafs through binders at the meeting listing proposed changes to Texas textbooks in a SBOE meeting in Austin on Monday, October 20, 2014 .Textbook publishers were invited to meeting where public concerns regarding their textbooks were discussed.

A new controversy could crop up this week as the State Board of Education is expected to adopt new social studies textbooks.

The Brief: Nov. 17, 2014

As authorities arrive in LaPorte to find what caused the methyl mercaptan gas leak that killed four DuPont plant workers on Saturday, information is emerging about the safety record of the plant.

The Brief: Nov. 19, 2014

House Speaker Joe Straus is shown on Sept. 20, 2014, during an interview at The Texas Tribune Festival.
House Speaker Joe Straus is shown on Sept. 20, 2014, during an interview at The Texas Tribune Festival.

Despite his challenger's vow to take a speaker vote to the floor on the first day of session, backers of House Speaker Joe Straus spent Tuesday trying to demonstrate the race is already a foregone conclusion.