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The Evening Brief: March 28, 2012

Your evening reading: Perry joins team of governors defending "pink slime"; Dewhurst adviser links Cruz to Soros; Democratic state lawmaker pushing to change Texas' Stand Your Ground law

Gov. Rick Perry speaks with a reporter on Feb. 21, 2012, a month after dropping his bid for the Republican presidential nomination.


  • Gov. Perry defends ‘pink slime’ (Houston Chronicle): "Gov. Rick Perry is defending so-called 'pink slime' in a statement issued in conjunction with Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad, Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback, Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman and South Dakota Lt. Gov. Matt Michels. … Their statement says that the 'lean, finely textured beef is a safe, nutritious product that is backed by sound science.' … Plans earlier were announced for Perry and others on Thursday to visit a Nebraska plant where the product still is being made."
  • Bush 41 to officially join Team Romney (Houston Chronicle): "It looks like the latest big-name endorsement for Mitt Romney will be Houstonian and former President George H.W. Bush. Bush is expected to make the announcement while Romney’s in town on Thursday."
  • Houston lawmaker vows to modify Texas version of 'stand your ground' law (The Dallas Morning News): "Rep. Garnet Coleman, D-Houston, said Texas needs to revise its law to prevent a tragedy such as the Trayvon Martin case in Florida from happening here. This state's current law is not that different from the so-called Stand Your Ground law used in Florida. Under current law in the Lone Star State, a person is justified in using deadly force in self-defense or if someone is unlawfully and with force trying to enter their home, business or vehicle or is in the act of committing murder, kidnapping, rape or robbery."
  • Justices Ask if Health Law Is Viable Without Mandate (The New York Times): "On the third and final day of Supreme Court arguments over President Obama’s health care overhaul law, several justices on Wednesday indicated a reluctance to pick and choose among the law's other provisions should the requirement that most Americans have health insurance be struck down. The questions from the justices indicated that at least some of them were considering either striking down just the requirement, often called the individual mandate, or the entire law."
  • Texas senator tries to block dunes lizard listing (The Associated Press): "Republican U.S. Sen. John Cornyn of Texas is trying to block the proposed listing of the dunes sagebrush lizard as an endangered species. Cornyn on Wednesday filed an amendment to energy tax credit legislation that would block the lizard's addition to the federal endangered species list."
  • Texas wins latest round with EPA in federal court (The Associated Press): "A federal appeals court scolded the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Tuesday for rejecting a series of state pollution control projects in Texas that federal regulators said failed to satisfy requirements of the Clean Air Act."
  • State Rep. Marc Veasey speaks against Mitt Romney's budget plans (Fort Worth Star-Telegram): "State Rep. Marc Veasey will stand outside the Fairmont Hotel in Dallas today — the site of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney's North Texas fundraiser this evening — to talk about the budget plan Romney supports."

New in The Texas Tribune:

  • Texas Farmers Watered Crops, Knowing That They Wouldn't Grow: "By mid-summer last year, many cotton farmers gave up all hope of producing a crop. Yet they had to keep watering, using precious resources from diminishing aquifers. That's because insurance companies, before making payouts, would ask for proof that the farmers had tried to make their land produce."
  • Guest Column: How Conservative is David Dewhurst?: "Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst appears to be in the middle of the Republican pack in the Texas Senate, where he presides, according to an analysis of senators' votes by Rice University political scientist Mark P. Jones."

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