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The Evening Brief: April 15, 2013

Your evening reading: Perry calls for $1.6 billion in business tax relief; George P. Bush jabs at Obama in new campaign video; Perry launches ad campaign targeting Illinois businesses

Gov. Rick Perry announces a 5 percent cut in the Texas franchise tax for small business on April 15, 2013. In the background are Rep. Harvey Hildebran, R-Kerrville, Gary Farmer of the Austin Chamber and MIke Morrissey of the governor's staff.

New in The Texas Tribune

•    Perry Calls for $1.6 Billion in Business Tax Cuts: "Gov. Rick Perry unveiled a four-point, $1.6 billion business tax relief plan Monday that includes an across-the-board rate reduction of the business franchise tax."

•    Perry Ad Campaign Targets Illinois Businesses: "Gov. Rick Perry launched a weeklong ad campaign Monday to lure Illinois businesses to Texas. The effort follows recent high-profile efforts by Perry to poach businesses from California."

•    UT Regent Wallace Hall: "Mea Culpa": "In an exclusive interview with Texas Monthly, controversial University of Texas System Regent Wallace Hall acknowledged that he did not recognize the need for ongoing communication with the Legislature."

•    Report: Texas Lags Behind Other States in Education, Health Care: "Texas remains behind most other states on issues related to educational achievement, public health and the environment, according to the latest version of the 'Texas on the Brink' study, released Monday."

•    At Capitol, Tea Party Slams State Transportation Plans: "Three days after the governor raised the possibility of new revenue streams — including the issuing of 100-year bonds — to fund transportation, members of Texas Tea Parties warned legislators against caving on conservative principles."

•    Lawmakers in No Rush to Regulate Themselves: "Lawmakers, like professional athletes, want to play fair and also want to win. That's why it's hard to get them to write their own rules. They know what has made them successful. They know what they can get away with. And they know what the public cares about and what it ignores."


•    George P. Bush slams Barack Obama, says tax day is the president’s 'favorite day of the year' (The Dallas Morning News): "George P. Bush, a GOP candidate for Texas land commissioner, slams Barack Obama in a new campaign video tied to Tax Day and calls the president the 'biggest cheerleader' for the federal government. 'It’s tax day, otherwise known as Barack Obama’s favorite day of the year,' Bush says in the 48-second video. 'And while our president is celebrating higher taxes and bigger government, here in Texas we’re creating jobs and building economic opportunities for everyone.'"

•    Kay Bailey Hutchison: 'Who can argue with background checks?' (Houston Chronicle): "If Kay Bailey Hutchison were still in the Senate, the debate over gun control would be unfolding differently. Appearing on CBS 'This Morning,' the former senator responded favorably to the background-check compromise currently before the Senate. Her successor, Sen. Ted Cruz, adamantly opposes the background-check provision and any attempt to tighten gun laws that he views as threats to the Second Amendment."

•    Constitutional amendment would add religious freedom language (Houston Chronicle): "State Sen. Donna Campbell’s proposed constitutional amendment to prohibit the government from burdening an individual's religious freedom, which is already in state statute, was considered Monday by a committee of lawmakers. Senate Joint Resolution 4 would prohibit the government from interfering in situations where an individual chooses to act or refuses to act in a certain way on the basis of religion unless the government proves it has a compelling interest."

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Politics Rick Perry