Texas doesn't require enough disclosure from its judges to fully inform the public about conflicts of interest, according to a report from the Center for Public Integrity. They gave the state a grade of F — along with 41 other states and the District of Columbia.Full Story
The Texas Ethics Commission is responsible for administering and enforcing sections of the election code and other statutory provisions generally governing politics and ethics in the state.
Among its key duties is the collecting and maintaining of records related to political fundraising and spending, lobbying activity reports and the filing of personal financial disclosure statements by state elected officials and ...
Well over half of the money raised so far by the Water Texas PAC came from heavy contractors, Dow Chemical Co. and Energy Future Holdings/Luminant. Use our analyzer to take a closer look at the donors.Full Story
We’ve updated our campaign finance analyzer to cover all of the contributions to statewide officeholders and candidates during the three special sessions this summer.Full Story
Political contributions to statewide candidates and officeholders during the second special legislative session this summer are now in our finance analyzer, which shows donations by size, location, donor and even by daily totals from June 26 to July 30.Full Story
Using campaign finance reports, we've put together a quick way to find the biggest donors to statewide candidates, the distribution of large and small donations, and how much money came in for each date in a reporting period.Full Story
Candidates are racing to raise money before an end-of-the-month deadline, the better to prove the strength of their campaigns for 2014 in reports that come out July 15.Full Story
Call it the self-preservation society. When push comes to shove, some members of the Texas Legislature are adamant that their elective offices should come with some special protections.
When it came to passing major ethics reforms that would have increased transparency for elected officials, the 83rd Legislature didn't make much headway. Lawmakers, it seems, didn't have the appetite for increased public disclosure.Full Story
Lawmakers talked a big game about improving transparency this session, but when push came to shove, they did next to nothing to advance it.
The clock is ticking for lawmakers hard at work to pass prize bills in the final days of the 83rd legislative session. Here's a look at what's still outstanding. Check back often: We'll update this story as deals are brokered or broken.
UPDATED: Facing a laundry list of record votes, lawmakers tacked on several amendments to an Ethics Commission reform bill on Monday that would strengthen the disclosure rules that govern them and their contributors.
It's easier, it seems, for lawmakers to regulate others than to regulate themselves. Ethics and transparency legislation has had a bumpy ride in the current legislative session.Full Story
Full video of Ross Ramsey's 5/16 TribLive conversation about ethics in the Texas Legislature with former Assistant Travis County District Attorney Mindy Montford, campaign finance lawyer Randall "Buck" Wood, state Rep. Giovanni Capriglione, R-Southlake, and former state Rep. Ismael "Kino" Flores, D-Palmview.Full Story
In this session's ethics battles, watchdogs say there’s more contradiction than conviction.Full Story
Lawmakers are talking seriously about a 21.5 percent pay raise for state district judges, which would increase the pensions of those same lawmakers by that same amount.Full Story
With just four weeks remaining in the legislative session, there has been little to no pressure from the top — including key committee chairs — to pass measures that would force greater transparency upon Texas’ elected officials.
State lawmakers have talked a big game this year on transparency and ethics, but with less than a month to go in the 83rd legislative session, the bills they’ve filed haven’t made much progress. Use our interactive to see where they stand.Full Story
Giving up 20 weeks of every other year to serve in the Texas Legislature is a lot easier if you don't have to worry about the paycheck you're missing at home. It is easier, in other words, if you're rich.Full Story
One Texan's transparency is another’s right to privacy, and people in politics generally find it easier to demand openness than to provide it.Full Story
Lawmakers started the legislative session talking about changes they would like to make in the state's ethics laws. Now — and it is not the first time — they're sending some of the most delicate items back for more study.Full Story
Lawmakers, like professional athletes, want to play fair and also want to win. That's why it's hard to get them to write their own rules.
Many lawmakers are quick to name the sacrifices they make to serve. But life in the Lege is not half bad. The perks associated with the job — from exotic trips to luxury gifts — can dramatically augment their lifestyles.Full Story