Texas Isn't Turning Purple. What Happened?

  • suggested by Ross Ramsey

SAN BENITO, Texas – Bottles of beer cost $3 at the Hollywood Bar. After dark, bottles of very necessary mosquito repellant are passed around, gratis. It’s a hot night, fifty or so locals have come to talk and meet Republican candidates, and nobody’s got anything kind to say about the immigration detention center down the road.

West Texas Oil Drilling Frustrates Some Farmers

While many rural communities have eagerly welcomed Texas’ drilling boom, most of Glasscock County’s 1,251 residents would have been happier if the drillers had passed them by. This story is part of our Shale Life project.

The Brief: Underwhelming Turnout in Early Voting This Year

Underwhelming turnout in early voting this year; In Tarrant County, Democrats aim for Republican voters; West Texas oil drilling frustrates some farmers; From state of Pappy and Kinky, SpicyBrown runs for Senate; Analysis: Candidates try to put good faces forward; Abbott votes, predicts strong showing with Latinos.

Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates endorses Will Hurd

Former CIA director and Defense Secretary Robert Gates is backing Republican congressional candidate Will Hurd, Gates’ first endorsement this election cycle. “”Will [has served] our country on the front lines of the War on Terror, he knows the cost of freedom, and you can count on him to take care of our veterans here at home,” Gates said in a statement issued by the Hurd campaign. “[Will] is a man of courage, integrity, and ability, and I enthusiastically support [his] election to the United States Congress.”

Hillary Rodham Clinton endorses Davis, Van de Putte

Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Thursday endorsed the Democratic women running for Texas’ top two offices, gubernatorial aspirant Wendy Davis and lieutenant governor candidate Leticia Van de Putte. Clinton, who is weighing a bid for the Democrats’ presidential nomination in 2016, applauded Davis for running a “tough, strong campaign” against Republican Greg Abbott.

Texas' early voting numbers flat, even with governor race

If voters are overly excited about electing the first new Texas governor in 14 years and wholesale changes across state government, the turnout so far hasn’t shown it. Despite a governor’s race between Republican Greg Abbott and Democrat Wendy Davis that has generated a combined $83 million in fundraising, and a massive voter outreach effort from the engineers of President Barack Obama’s re-election, early voting across Texas has stayed relatively flat.

Cruz on Apple CEO Tim Cook being gay: 'Personal decision'

  • suggested by John Reynolds

Cruz, who opposes gay marriage, switched to the larger issue when asked on CNBC on Thursday about a piece by Cook in Bloomberg Businessweek in which Cook came out.  "Those are his personal choices. I’ll tell you, I love my iPhone," Cruz said.

Civil war looms for GOP

  • suggested by John Reynolds

“The American people don’t want Republicans to become appeasers and supporters of a watered down Obama agenda.” The problem for Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and other GOP leaders is that they will also face pressure to govern — which could involve cooperating with President Obama to keep the government operating and turn legislation into law.

Garcia: Firefighters cement their unlikely bond with Patrick

That union endorsement vote went overwhelmingly for Patrick, but it exposed some internal divisions within the ranks of San Antonio's Professional Firefighters Association, according to union sources. San Antonio firefighters have consistently backed Van de Putte in her state Senate races over the years, and veteran union leaders generally view her as a friend to SAPFA. Sources say, however, that the firefighters association has grown more politically conservative in recent years as it has absorbed the addition of younger recruits from suburban communities.

Ogg loses endorsement in DA race

A Houston law enforcement union that initially endorsed both Harris County District Attorney Devon Anderson, a Republican, and her Democratic challenger, Kim Ogg, on Thursday rescinded its support for Ogg after she made comments about a deputy's line-of-duty death during a campaign news conference.

Tomlinson: Resisting the Keystone XL pipeline is futile

The key lesson is that oil will find a way to refineries as long as there's a customer. Opponents spent six years trying to convince the White House not to grant a permit for the Keystone XL pipeline to prevent Alberta oil from reaching the Houston and elsewhere on the Gulf Coast, but did nothing more than delay the inevitable.

Crude slide offers cover for exports

The plummet in oil prices is easing some of the political risks of lifting the United States' longstanding ban on exporting crude, even as it removes some of the pressure on the White House and Congress to act.

For Willie Nelson, a biodiesel dream deferred

But as the biodiesel dream stalls out, despite the best efforts of everybody's favorite Texas singer/songwriter/stoner/actor/steakhouse proprietor/spiritual guide, the fate of BioWillie offers hard lessons for any effort to shift the energy diet of Americans.

Scion prepares to return Bush name to Texas politics

Bush has raised money in 10 states and Washington, D.C., over the past two years, according to recently filed disclosures that shed light on the national nature of his campaign. He has raised money a half dozen times in Miami, home of father Jeb Bush, the former Florida governor who is weighing his own presidential run.