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TribWeek: In Case You Missed It

Hamilton on Tarleton State's fuss over a play featuring a gay Jesus and how it never got to the stage, E. Smith and a gang of political types with unsolicited advice for Bill White, Stiles on Texans' slothful approach to the census, Aguilar on immigrant detention policy and mentally ill inmates, Grissom on federal immigration reform, Rapoport on an effort to protect the state's prepaid college tuition program, Stiles and E. Smith interview Houston Mayor Annise Parker on NASA and the economy and staying out of state politics, Hu on the final move in U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison's long and very public fretting over whether to stay in office, Ramsey on Hutchison's ripple through the political pond, Ramshaw on how federal health care legislation looks to Texas budget-writers, Garcia-Ditta on shrinking capacity at Texas mental hospitals, E. Smith has a conversation with former U.S. Secretary of State James Baker, and Hamilton, Ramshaw and M. Smith on primary runoffs in Plano, San Antonio, and Central Texas. The best of our best from March 29 to April 2, 2010.

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As part of a class assignment, a Tarleton State University theater student decided to direct an award-winning play in which the son of God is heralded as the "King of Queers." Then came the protests and threats of violence and Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst's press releases, and suddenly it was curtains for the whole production.

Bill White has 31 weeks to make his case that we should fire Rick Perry and hire him instead. But when should he introduce himself to voters? When should he start attacking the governor? When should he spend his millions?

Only five states have a worse rate of participation in the Census than Texas, but the counting has only just begun.

Detainees with mental impairments lack proper medical evaluation when they enter the federal immigration detention system and don't get adequate medication and access to social services, according to a new study.

Lawmakers are reeling from the bruising political battle over health care reform and are loath to take on another divisive issue and additional risky votes. So the prospects remain dim for legislation that would improve border security, provide a pathway to citizenship for millions and crack down on unscrupulous employers — but that doesn't mean everyone's forgotten about immigration reform.

Lobbyists and lawmakers are fighting to preserve the terms of the contracts signed by parents who enrolled in the state's prepaid college tuition plan.

Former U.S. Secretary of State James Baker sat for a converation about foreign policy, partisan politics and the national debt.

Three months into her new job, the mayor of the state's largest city says she's working hard to combat the effects of a down economy, putting partisan differences aside to join with GOP congressmen in lobbying Washington to keep NASA intact, and trying to untangle the longstanding knot that is mass transit.

Kay Bailey Hutchison said she would limit her time in the U.S. Senate to two terms and is currently serving a third. She said she would resign her federal office to run for governor and didn't. She said she would quit after the primary and hasn't. So how far-fetched is that she'd go back on her most recent, not-yet-reversed plan to retire in two years and run for a fourth term? While we watch and wait, the impatient careers of ambitious politicians up and down the ballot hang in the balance.

The debate over how much federal health care reform will cost Texas put the state’s health and human services chief on the defensive as he presented a budget estimate that is 20 times higher than federal projections.

The wait to get into one of Texas' 10 state mental hospitals — already long — may be about to get longer. Proposed budget cuts would trim 50 beds from four of the state's 10 mental hospitals. And those hospitals are already almost at full capacity, with nearly 2,500 self-admitted patients and allegedly criminal patients awaiting treatment so they can stand trial

And then we have The Runoffs: She says he's a carpetbagger. He says she's a moderate. Collin County voters are choosing between former city councilwoman Mabrie Jackson and businessman Van Taylor to succeed state Rep. Brian McCall, R-Plano ... Cut through the routine Republican primary rhetoric about government spending and job creation and a narrative about the new and old guard emerges in Texas' 23rd congressional district ... It's money versus geography and name ID in the race between the two top finishers in the five-way GOP primary in this conservative-leaning congressional district. The winner will face U.S. Rep. Chet Edwards, D-Waco.

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