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The Midday Brief: December 14, 2009

Your afternoon reading.

Your afternoon reading:

• “Friedman finalized his decision after meeting with Democratic gubernatorial candidates Bill White and Farouk Shami separately over the weekend.” — Kinky Exits Governor's Race, Will Seek Ag Commissioner Post — The Texas Tribune

• “Ladies and gentleman, my name is Farouk Shami, which is not stranger than Barack Hussein Obama, and I am ready to serve the people and be your next Texas governor." — Shami officially filesTexas Politics

• “If the Army does the re-evaluation and ultimately keeps the plant and its jobs in Sealy, this turn will prove a victory for the Texas members including Sens. Kay Bailey Hutchison and John Cornyn and Austin Rep. Michael McCaul, who had drawn fire from a Democratic strategist after an open-records request showed no written communications between the Pentagon and McCaul’s office before the Army announced its plans to shift the plant to Wisconsin in August.” — Auditor says Army should revisit shift of contract and 3,000 jobs from Texas to Wisconsin Postcards

• “Ogden, R-Bryan, doesn't have a clear shot at re-election; Huntsville businessman Ben Bius is staying in the GOP primary race even though he's now taking on a powerful incumbent.” — The 'no' man may returnSan Antonio Express-News

• “Some states have dropped the basic safety review after driver complaints that they were annoying and unnecessary. And some automobile experts in Texas and across the country say more reliable cars and other safety improvements have rendered the inspections obsolete.” — Are Texas' auto safety inspections worth the hassle?The Dallas Morning News

• “During a recession that has claimed 1 million Texas jobs, state agencies and public universities added the equivalent of nearly 9,000 workers in a year, according to a report by the state auditor’s office.” — Texas hired equivalent of nearly 9,000 workers in fiscal 2009Fort Worth Star-Telegram

New in The Texas Tribune:

• “Think like they think and your mind will go to the long game instead of the short one. The short game is the elections. The long game is maps” — Mapmaker, Mapmaker — The Texas Tribune

• “Some Texas sheriffs are looking to an unlikely source to get them out of the hole as private prisons win away federal contracts for inmates and put the financial squeeze on county jails.” — USDA Approved: Jail Construction — The Texas Tribune

• “At the middle of the maelstrom is the State Center for Early Childhood Education, housed within the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston, which has come to dominate Pre-K in Texas.” — Does Texas Pre-K work? — The Texas Tribune

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