TribWeek: Top Texas News for the Week of 4/30/12

Aguilar on the House District 77 primary, Batheja on the HD-101 and SD-9 primaries, Galbraith on the GOP candidates for two Railroad Commission slots, Grissom on the latest in the Kerry Max Cook case, Hamilton on Texas A&M's new accountability website, Murphy and M. Smith on how much superintendents make, Ramsey interviews a would-be Democratic Party chair, Root on that nice Ted Nugent, M. Smith on the resignation of the state's education commissioner and Tan on the continuing court fight over Planned Parenthood: The best of our best content from April 30 to May 4, 2012.

Graphic by Todd Wiseman

Aaron Barraza isn't letting his youth stop him from trying to unseat state Rep. Marisa Marquez of El Paso in the Democratic primary in HD-77. Marquez says her record should earn her another term.

A three-person HD-101 Democratic primary in Tarrant County features two former state representatives who can't stop swiping at each other and a fake string of emails that have been called "Machiavellian."

How to pay for the state's transportation needs has emerged as a key issue in the open state Senate District 9 primary race between Republican state Reps. Kelly Hancock and Todd Smith.

One overriding theme unifies the multiple Republican candidates for two Texas Railroad Commission slots: The Environmental Protection Agency has overreached and must be scaled back.

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Former death row inmate Kerry Max Cook is asking for a hearing into what happened to biological evidence in his 35-year-old case.

This week, Texas A&M University is making significant amounts of data easily available to the public on a new "accountability" website, allowing people to dig into issues such as graduation rates, research expenditures and more.

During the 2011 legislative session, we compiled a salary database of all the state’s highest-paid school administrators: superintendents. After a year and a $5.4 billion reduction in state funding to public education, we are doing it again.

Rachel Barrios-Van Os, a Texas Democratic Party chair hopeful, talked to Ross Ramsey about what's wrong with the Democrats, how they can become competitive again and why she's the best person for the job.

If you thought a little Secret Service investigation or a $10,000 bear hunting fine would tame the "Motor City Madman," well, you probably have never sat down for a chat with Ted Nugent.
Texas Education Agency Commissioner Robert Scott is leaving the post Gov. Rick Perry appointed him to in 2007.
A federal judge's ruling means that the state may begin removing Planned Parenthood and other so-called abortion "affiliates" from the Women's Health Program.

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