The Evening Brief: May 28, 2013
Your evening reading: Perry signs water bill; senators hope to revive transportation funding plan; New York GOP congressman boycotting Cruz dinner
New in The Texas Tribune
• Perry Hails Water Bill, is Evasive on His Future: "Gov. Rick Perry signed a major water infrastructure bill into law on Tuesday. Speaking to reporters afterward, he remained coy about his political future and wouldn't say if he will add any items to the special session agenda."
• Senators Hope to Revive Plan to Fund Roads: "A plan to fund Texas highway construction by diverting half of the money that currently feeds the state's Rainy Day Fund could find new life in a special session."
• Craddick Faults Nichols Over Texting-While-Driving Bill: "State Rep. Tom Craddick, who authored a bill that would have made texting while driving a criminal offense in Texas, is pointing the finger at Senate Transportation Chairman Robert Nichols over the measure's failure."
• Which Votes Will Haunt Texas Lawmakers?: "Gov. Rick Perry has until June 16 to sign or veto bills from the legislative session, but political operatives are already combing through the records of the proceedings, looking for votes that might haunt legislators in next year's elections."
• Redistricting Special Session: The Districts in Question: Lawmakers are deciding whether to ratify political maps drawn by federal judges for the 2012 elections and to use those maps in 2014. Based on the last two elections, we've calculated the political environment in each district.
• Peter King Won’t Attend Republican Dinner Headlined By Ted Cruz (BuzzFeed): "New York Republican Peter King is boycotting a state party dinner tomorrow night featuring Sen. Ted Cruz over the Texas conservative’s efforts to defeat a Hurricane Sandy bill earlier this year."
• Justices Make It Easier for Inmates to Challenge Convictions (The New York Times): "In a pair of 5-to-4 decisions that divided along ideological lines, the Supreme Court on Tuesday made it easier for inmates to challenge their convictions. … In the second decision issued Tuesday, in Trevino v. Thaler, No. 11-10189, the same five-justice majority extended a ruling last year that had allowed prisoners to challenge their state convictions in federal courts based on the argument that their trial lawyers had been ineffective, even though the prisoners had not raised the issue in earlier proceedings."
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