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The Brief: April 1, 2010

Kay stays, census or bust, "no" to the AG and another battle in the badlands.

THE BIG CONVERSATION:

OK, so she’s staying. Now what? Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison’s future in Washington D.C. was solidified for at least two years when she announced she would stay in the U.S. Senate until the end of her current term. After that, however, it’s anyone’s guess what’s in the cards. Tribune managing editor Ross Ramsey has a report today concerning how, given her penchant for flip-flopping, Hutchison might seek another term in 2012.

Following her no-questions-from-the-media press conference yesterday, many would-be candidates vying for what they thought would be her vacant seat sounded off, as did former rival Gov. Rick Perry and colleague, Sen. John Cornyn.

CULLED:

 

  • For the sake of the child. A district judge on Wednesday denied Attorney General Greg Abbott’s attempt to intervene in the divorce proceeding of a gay couple who married in Massachusetts and filed for divorce in Texas, according to a report in the Austin American-Statesman. The couple married four years ago and adopted a son, now 4, which prompted Judge Scott Jenkins to ask Abbott’s deputy attorney general whether or not Abbott considered the child when he tried to put the “brakes on the proceeding.” Instead, Jenkins said, the attorney general’s office is already involved in a similar case in Dallas that would establish precedent.                         
  • Today is the day government agents will knock down your door, install a micro-chip in your brain, shave your pets, then post on billboards across the state your elementary school photos if you refuse to fill out the U.S. Census form. OK, that was a weak attempt at an April Fools joke, but census directors aren’t necessarily laughing today. Texas, despite a late push to promote an improved state-wide turnout, is lagging in its response rate so far, according to a report by the Fort Worth Star Telegram. In terms of social programs, that means billions could be left on the table for health and human services, schools and transportation projects. In terms of political power, the census dictates how political maps will be drawn during next year’s legislative session. That usually leads to a full-fledged partisan redistricting brawl. But Texas Tribune editor Evan Smith broke a story yesterday detailing how the left and the right in Washington, D.C. are in the  process of back room maneuvers to avoid a stalemate. In the report Smith explains the GOP and the Democrats would split down the middle the four seats Texas is expected to gain. But, what if there are three new districts and not four? Time will tell.                                                                                                                                  
  • An international incident? El Paso County Sheriff Richard Wiles told the El Paso Times on Wednesday that a motive for the murder last month of one of his corrections officers offered up by Mexican authorities wasn’t up to snuff. Arthur Redelfs, a corrections officer in the border city, was gunned down alongside his wife, Lesley Enriquez, in a midday attack after leaving a party in Juarez. The murder made worldwide headlines and prompted fears that Mexican drug gangs were purposely targeting U.S. officials after it was determined Enriquez worked at the U.S. consulate’s office. Mexican authorities said yesterday Redelfs was targeted by the Barrio Azteca prison gang, whose members work for the Juarez cartel, because he mistreated inmates. Redelfs "was a model officer in good standing with the El Paso County Sheriff's Office," Wiles reportedly stated, adding the FBI could soon offer another theory. 

 

 

MUST READ:

State senators hear about how to enact federal health care lawAustin American-Statesman

Dallas police chief finalists meet with city leadersThe Dallas Morning News

RNC plans to piggyback off SRLCPolitico

Woman saves 2 children before dying in burning carEl Paso Times

Obama plan for more drilling wins few fansHouston Chronicle

D-FW's three largest public universities outline push for Tier One status Fort Worth Star-Telegram

The End of UT FootballAustin Chronicle

 

 

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