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The Brief: March 18, 2010

It’s not just Gov. Rick Perry who wants the President to make a trip south.

A screengrab from Perry's "Border" spot.

THE BIG CONVERSATION:

 It’s not just Gov. Rick Perry who wants the President to make a trip south.

Jabber about this week’s bad news from the border reached a high pitch yesterday when U.S. Sens. John Cornyn and Kay Bailey Hutchison wrote to the White House about their security concerns. The pair, who said this weekend’s killings of an El Paso couple prompted the letter, suggested Barack Obama join them on a visit to the Texas border and urged him to to make sure violence from Mexico’s bloody drug wars doesn’t continue to spill over into the U.S.

The senators made three specific requests: a joint intelligence briefing of the U.S. Northern Command, the Drug Enforcement Agency, the FBI and the CIA; a “concrete plan for additional resources” to protect the border; and national attention on the border problems.

In a weekly conference call with reporters, Cornyn said: ““I think part of the problem in Washington is that the knowledge that people assume they have about the border is derived from reading novels and watching movies.”

This week, Perry also called for federal support to protect the border, in the form of drones and National Guard troops.

CULLED:

Tax returns, schmax returns. There’s new fuel for the Perry campaign’s Bill White attacks. BJ Services Co., the oil field services company White served on the board of while mayor of Houston is now facing scrutiny from Congress in its investigation into hydraulic fracturing techniques in gas drilling and its connection to groundwater pollution. White made $2.6 million during his tenure on the board of the firm.

• The Baptist General Convention of Texas has made moves to shun the Royal Lane Baptist Church after it "changed its Web site to reflect an affirmation of gay members.” The body has put in escrow any funds it has sent to the Dallas church, and asked that Royal Lane remove from its publications any mention of affiliation with BGCT.

• If your election fever isn’t yet cured by the round of April runoffs, May’s special elections ought to do it, if you live in South Dallas or Central Texas. That’s where voters will return to the polls to replace state Rep. Terri Hodge and state Sen. Kip Averitt, who both were on the ballot for reelection but have since resigned.

"Not surprising is the full range of progressive issues that liberals want the SBOE to include, from emphasizing equity and tolerance for all minorities to erasing key conservative figures and events from history and whitewashing the Judeo-Christian convictions of our Founders." Chuck Norris, on national criticism of Texas’ State Board of Education

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Dear Texas: Please shut up. Sincerely, HistoryThe San Francisco Chronicle

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