POLITICS: Special Interests

Cuellar: Debate on Immigration Surge Set to Re-emerge

US Congressman Henry Cuellar (D-TX 28th District) speaks with Rep. Doug Miller R-New Braunfels, during a visit to the Texas Capitol on February 19th, 2013.
US Congressman Henry Cuellar (D-TX 28th District) speaks with Rep. Doug Miller R-New Braunfels, during a visit to the Texas Capitol on February 19th, 2013.

The congressional debate about how to address the influx of unaccompanied Central American minors crossing illegally into Texas is likely to re-emerge later this year when lawmakers debate an omnibus budget bill, according to a Texas lawmaker.

Series: Bypassed by the Miracle

Keller ISD Superintendent Randy Reid spoke during an Aug. 11, 2014, town hall meeting, where attendees debated whether to put a $175 million bond up to Keller ISD voters in the general election.
Keller ISD Superintendent Randy Reid spoke during an Aug. 11, 2014, town hall meeting, where attendees debated whether to put a $175 million bond up to Keller ISD voters in the general election.

Check out Bypassed by the Miracle, our seven-part series on the people and communities that have missed out on Texas' economic success or are finding that it comes at a price. 

Critics Charge Local Bond Elections Lack Transparency

Keller ISD Superintendent Randy Reid spoke during an Aug. 11, 2014, town hall meeting, where attendees debated whether to put a $175 million bond up to Keller ISD voters in the general election.
Keller ISD Superintendent Randy Reid spoke during an Aug. 11, 2014, town hall meeting, where attendees debated whether to put a $175 million bond up to Keller ISD voters in the general election.

Texas voters approve billions of dollars in new local debt each year. A growing group of critics argues that voters wouldn't be so agreeable if they were more clearly informed of the debt that's already owed in their name.

Attorneys Struggling to Help Migrants Navigate Legal System

A Catholic Charities shelter at Sacred Heart Church in McAllen helps hundreds of displaced immigrants who have crossed the Texas-Mexico border. Texas immigration lawyers are scrambling to coordinate representation for many of the migrants.
A Catholic Charities shelter at Sacred Heart Church in McAllen helps hundreds of displaced immigrants who have crossed the Texas-Mexico border. Texas immigration lawyers are scrambling to coordinate representation for many of the migrants.

Texas immigration lawyers are scrambling to coordinate representation for the thousands of Central American migrants who have crossed into Texas illegally. 

 

At Booking, Perry Reiterates Defense of Veto

Governor Rick Perry is led into the booking area of the Travis County Courthouse for fingerprints and photographs on August 19, 2014.
Governor Rick Perry is led into the booking area of the Travis County Courthouse for fingerprints and photographs on August 19, 2014.

After being booked on two felony counts — a process that took less than 10 minutes — Gov. Rick Perry again stood by his veto of public integrity unit funding and called his indictment "a chilling restraint on the right of free speech."

 

El Paso Homeless Shelter to Focus on Female Veterans

Hope Jackson, who retired as a lieutenant colonel in the Army, is shown on the future site of her HOPE (Healing, Optimizing, Perfecting, Empowering) Institute shelter for female veterans, on July 29, 2014, in El Paso. The shelter will start providing services to women in the area this fall, Jackson says.
Hope Jackson, who retired as a lieutenant colonel in the Army, is shown on the future site of her HOPE (Healing, Optimizing, Perfecting, Empowering) Institute shelter for female veterans, on July 29, 2014, in El Paso. The shelter will start providing services to women in the area this fall, Jackson says.

“God spoke to me," Hope Jackson said about her plan to start a shelter for homeless female veterans in El Paso. Jackson, who is relying on her money and community support to convert a house for the facility, said it would be ready this fall.

Will They or Won't They? Time Running Out to Address Border Crisis

A detainee sleeps in a holding cell at a U.S. Customs and Border Protection processing facility, Wednesday, June 18, 2014, in Brownsville, Texas. CPB provided media tours Tuesday of two locations in Brownsville and Nogales, Ariz. that have been central to processing the more than 47,000 unaccompanied children who have entered the country illegally since Oct. 1.
A detainee sleeps in a holding cell at a U.S. Customs and Border Protection processing facility, Wednesday, June 18, 2014, in Brownsville, Texas. CPB provided media tours Tuesday of two locations in Brownsville and Nogales, Ariz. that have been central to processing the more than 47,000 unaccompanied children who have entered the country illegally since Oct. 1.

UPDATED: After the U.S. House called off a vote Tuesday afternoon on a $659 million supplemental bill for border security operations, Gov. Rick Perry said Congress is "abandoning its post."

 

Cuellar: "Failure is Not an Option" on Border Crisis

US Congressman Henry Cuellar (D-TX 28th District) speaks with Rep. Doug Miller R-New Braunfels, during a visit to the Texas Capitol on February 19th, 2013.
US Congressman Henry Cuellar (D-TX 28th District) speaks with Rep. Doug Miller R-New Braunfels, during a visit to the Texas Capitol on February 19th, 2013.

If lawmakers do not act to address the immigration crisis on Texas' southern border before their August break, smugglers will get the message that the government does not take the crisis seriously, U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar says.

Perry: Send Migrant Kids Home Without Delay

Gov. Perry and DPS Director Steve McCraw, speak to media following a tour to a federal facility housing unaccompanied alien children in Weslaco, Texas June 23rd, 2014. The state is providing $1.3 million per week to commence surge operations to help combat crime along the border.
Gov. Perry and DPS Director Steve McCraw, speak to media following a tour to a federal facility housing unaccompanied alien children in Weslaco, Texas June 23rd, 2014. The state is providing $1.3 million per week to commence surge operations to help combat crime along the border.

Gov. Rick Perry on Thursday doubled down on his stance that tens of thousands of children crossing into Texas illegally from Central America should be sent back to their countries without delay.

 

Perry Warns of a "Trail of Tears" From Central America

Gov. Rick Perry and DPS Director Steve McCraw spoke at a June 23, 2014, news conference following a tour of a federal facility housing unaccompanied minors in Weslaco, Texas. The state is providing $1.3 million per week to step up border patrols.
Gov. Rick Perry and DPS Director Steve McCraw spoke at a June 23, 2014, news conference following a tour of a federal facility housing unaccompanied minors in Weslaco, Texas. The state is providing $1.3 million per week to step up border patrols.

Gov. Rick Perry on Monday warned that if Central American leaders do not heed the call to stop their citizens from flooding across the Texas-Mexico border, the summer months will bear witness to a “trail of tears” caused by a surge of dead migrants.

 

DPS Addresses New Border Operation

Newly commissioned patrol vessel, part of the Tactical Marine Unit, funded by federal Homeland Security grants, will help with the state's efforts in combating Mexican drug cartels patrolling the Rio Grande River
Newly commissioned patrol vessel, part of the Tactical Marine Unit, funded by federal Homeland Security grants, will help with the state's efforts in combating Mexican drug cartels patrolling the Rio Grande River

UPDATED: The Texas DPS said Thursday that as part of its new mission, it will partner with local and federal authorities to “deter and disrupt drug and human trafficking, and other border-related crimes.”

In CD-23, Advantages Are Seen for Both Gallego and Hurd

U.S. Rep. Pete Gallego (left), an Alpine Democrat, is facing a challenge from Will Hurd, a former CIA agent, in the race to represent the 23rd Congressional District.
U.S. Rep. Pete Gallego (left), an Alpine Democrat, is facing a challenge from Will Hurd, a former CIA agent, in the race to represent the 23rd Congressional District.

U.S. Rep. Pete Gallego, D-Alpine, is facing a challenge from former CIA agent Will Hurd, a Republican. The contest is considered a toss-up, with immigration and border security likely to be key issues in the border district.