•    Rick Perry will speak at CPAC (The Hill): "Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) will speak at the Conservative Political Action Conference, the annual gathering of top Republican rising stars. This will be the first time Perry has stepped onto the national stage since his 2012 presidential campaign flamed out after a series of missteps and gaffes."

•    Sotomayor, Breyer reprimand Texas prosecutor for race comment (Yahoo! News): "Supreme Court Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Stephen Breyer sternly admonished a federal prosecutor in Texas for a racially charged comment he made while cross examining a black defendant in a drug trial two years ago. The justices released the statement as part of the court's decision to decline to hear the defendant's appeal."

•    As sequester nears, no signs of progress (The Washington Post): "Four days from the onset of the so-called 'sequester,' a series of wide-ranging across-the-board budget cuts, politicians from both parties spent Monday talking about how ill-advised it would be to allow the cuts to proceed. But they appeared to be making little — or no — progress toward preventing them."

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•    Democrats Enjoy 2-1 Advantage Over GOP Among Hispanics (Gallup): "U.S. Hispanic adults are more than twice as likely to identify as or lean Democratic than Republican, according to Gallup Daily tracking data collected throughout 2012. In total, 51% of Hispanics identified as or leaned Democratic, while a little less than a quarter (24%) identified with or leaned toward the GOP. Twenty percent were wholly independent, with no preferences for either party."

•    Turner urges AG to drop Voting Rights Act challenge (Houston Chronicle): "As the U.S. Supreme Court prepares to hear a challenge to a Voting Rights Act requirement that states including Texas receive federal approval before implementing voting-law changes, a black state lawmaker on Monday urged Attorney General Greg Abbott to drop his push to do away with the provision. Without Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, Rep. Sylvester Turner said, many if not all of the state’s black lawmakers would not be serving at the Capitol."

New in The Texas Tribune

•    Updated: Despite Moratorium, CPRIT Board Moves Forward: "The oversight board for the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas has decided to move forward on contract negotiations for $183 million in approved grants that have been stalled by a moratorium."

•    Andre Thomas: A Struggle for Sanity Behind Bars: "Andre Thomas is among thousands of mentally ill inmates in a sprawling state prison system that is struggling to keep pace with the increasing need for mental health care. Medical staff say they need more state funding."

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