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The Midday Brief: Sept. 6, 2011

Your afternoon reading: Perry knocks federal response to wildfires; redistricting case under way; Perry's electability

The sun sets through the smoke from the Bastrop wildfires near sunset at the intersection of highways 45 and 183 near Lockhart on Sept. 5, 2011.

Your afternoon reading:

  • Official damage-assessment teams are being deployed this afternoon into wildfire-blackened areas of Bastrop County, even before the flames are out, to begin logging details for a request for federal disaster aid. … Gov. Rick Perry, at a press conference earlier today, said Texas will seek a federal disaster declaration because of the wildfires, which have destroyed as many as 500 homes in the Bastrop area and several hundred more in northwestern Travis County since Sunday. Perry expressed frustration with federal officials taking so long to approve a major disaster declaration for Texas, which has been hit with wildfires for months." — FEMA-state assessment teams move in, Postcards
  • "Is there any real substance to the idea that Perry is just too Texas and too conservative for Washington? … 'Electability is the fool’s gold of politics,' said chief Perry strategist David Carney." — What we know so far about Rick Perry’s electability, The Fix
  • "Texas stands to lose 59,271 construction jobs over the next year if Congress fails to extend surface transportation spending that expires Sept. 30.  That’s the warning from Obama administration officials who are trying to rally public pressure on Congress to support the temporary reauthorization of spending that has been okayed seven times over the last two years." — Texas would lose 60,000 jobs if Congress fails to pass highway bill, White House says, Texas on the Potomac

New in The Texas Tribune:

  • "The early results of the latest leg in a key fundraising race for Texas universities seeking tier-one status are in — and the University of Texas at Dallas is in the lead. But there's still more than $1.2 million up for grabs this biennium." — Tier-One Money Still Up For Grabs in University Competition

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