Tribpedia: Joe Straus

House Speaker Joe Straus (left) and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick.
House Speaker Joe Straus (left) and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick.

What Happened to Straus' and Patrick's Priority Bills?

Over the course of this year's legislative session, House Speaker Joe Straus and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick made their priorities known by what bills got the lowest bill numbers. The chambers' priority bills touched on some of the most contentious issues of the session. Take a look at how those proposals fared.

Speaker Joe Straus during June 9, 2015 Tribune Conversation
Speaker Joe Straus during June 9, 2015 Tribune Conversation

Straus: A Cautious, Conservative Session

In a wide-ranging interview with The Texas Tribune’s Evan Smith, House Speaker Joe Straus touted the new state budget, franchise tax cuts and the Legislature’s slow but steady pace this year. He said he wasn't surprised by the failure of ethics reform legislation and said a controversial union dues bill was plagued by "the poorest job of lobbying" he'd seen.

A fueling station for vehicles powered by compressed natural gas sits in Austin. As of mid-March, Texas was home to 130 natural gas fueling stations, according to the Railroad Commission of Texas. Those 77 public stations and 63 private ones serve about 7,200 vehicles.
A fueling station for vehicles powered by compressed natural gas sits in Austin. As of mid-March, Texas was home to 130 natural gas fueling stations, according to the Railroad Commission of Texas. Those 77 public stations and 63 private ones serve about 7,200 vehicles.

After Early Momentum, Energy Legislation Stalls

Who killed the House and Senate's top energy bills? Their autopsy evokes the names of T. Boone Pickens and Koch Industries and involves plenty of squabbling between the chambers.  

Former Gov. Rick Perry poses with cadets after delivering a foreign policy speech at The Citadel, South Carolina's military college, earlier this year.
Former Gov. Rick Perry poses with cadets after delivering a foreign policy speech at The Citadel, South Carolina's military college, earlier this year.

The Brief: Perry Set to Return to Presidential Politics

Later this morning in Addison, Rick Perry is expected to announce that he plans to run again for the White House, testing whether GOP voters across the country believe in extending him a second act in presidential politics.

State Sen. José Menéndez, D-San Antonio, shows off his Sine Die tie on the last day of the 84th Legislative session on June 1, 2015.
State Sen. José Menéndez, D-San Antonio, shows off his Sine Die tie on the last day of the 84th Legislative session on June 1, 2015.

Analysis: A Conservative but Complicated Legislature

Voters sent a conservative pack of lawmakers to Austin and got conservative results. But it's more complicated than that. Issues that might have seemed black and white during the elections were rendered in shades of gray during the session.

(L-R) State House Speaker Joe Straus, Governor Greg Abbott and Dan Patrick on May 21, 2015.
(L-R) State House Speaker Joe Straus, Governor Greg Abbott and Dan Patrick on May 21, 2015.

Effort to Tighten Spending Cap Dies

The state’s constitutional spending cap will remain untouched this session, and House and Senate leaders are blaming each other for the lack of action on the arcane but politically important measure.

House Ways and Means Chair Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton, speaks with House Appropriations Chair John Otto, R-Dayton, and House Administration Chair Charlie Geren, R-Fort Worth, on the House floor on May 14, 2015.
House Ways and Means Chair Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton, speaks with House Appropriations Chair John Otto, R-Dayton, and House Administration Chair Charlie Geren, R-Fort Worth, on the House floor on May 14, 2015.

The Brief: The Tax Deal That Almost Wasn't

The Dallas Morning News takes a detailed look at the evolution of the deal on tax cuts this session and finds that at a few critical junctures, the deal almost derailed entirely.