The Big Conversation:
Gov. Rick Perry's sticking to his pro-10th Amendment guns.
Perry drew fire this week from conservatives — including presidential candidate Rick Santorum — for saying Friday at a Republican governors event that, from a states' rights standpoint, he was "fine" with New York's law legalizing gay marriage. "That is their call. If you believe in the 10th Amendment, stay out of their business," Perry said. (The governor's spokesman later affirmed that Perry still supports a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage.)
Speaking in Houston on Wednesday, Perry made a similar argument about abortion, as the Tribune's Jay Root reports. Though Perry personally opposes abortion rights, the governor said that if Roe v. Wade were overturned, states should be able to decide for themselves whether to legalize or ban the procedure.
“You either have to believe in the 10th amendment or you don’t," Perry said. "You can’t believe in the 10th Amendment for a few issues and then something that doesn’t suit you, you say, 'Well we really rather not have that state decide that.'"
As The Washington Post recently noted, the primacy of the 10th Amendment has emerged as a centerpiece of Perry's still-hypothetical presidential campaign.
But could Perry's touting of the 10th land him in hot water with conservatives?
"I realize that Rick Perry is a big state’s rights guy," Kathryn Jean Lopez of the National Review wrote after Perry's remark on gay marriage. "But that is a fascinatingly shocking thing for someone supposedly running for the Republican nomination to say."
- The Austin American-Statesman reports that U.S. District Judge Gray Miller will hear arguments today in the suit filed against Gov. Rick Perry's Aug. 6 prayer event. The Freedom From Religion Foundation, a Wisconsin-based atheist watchdog group, filed a suit two weeks ago asking a federal court to block Perry's participation in the prayer and fasting event on the grounds that his involvement violates the separation of church and state. The Houston Chronicle, meanwhile, reports that it's still unclear whether Perry plans to speak at the event.
- With the U.S. House likely to vote today on Speaker John Boehner's budget bill to keep the country from defaulting, the Tribune contacted all 32 members of Texas' congressional delegation to see how they would vote on the plan, which has drawn considerable opposition, largely from Tea Party freshmen. "I didn’t put my neck on the line and go toe to toe with Obama to not have an army behind me," Boehner said Wednesday, according to The New York Times.
- The Dallas Morning News reports that as Gov. Rick Perry nears a presidential run, he could face harsh criticism from right over his support for giving in-state tuition to illegal immigrants.
"I think this threat that somehow or another the world is going to come to an end and the threat of 'We’re not going to be able to pay our bills' is a bit of a stretch." — Gov. Rick Perry on the debt ceiling fight in Washington
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- In Juárez, an uneasy calm after prison riot, El Paso Times
- Houston-area officials work to reverse parole in 1991 gay slaying, Houston Chronicle
- A Texas Jobs Miracle? It's Complicated, The Texas Tribune