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The Evening Brief: July 2, 2013

Your evening reading: Perry to announce "exciting future plans" on Monday; almost 2,000 witnesses sign up to testify at abortion hearing; poll shows Davis trailing Perry

Gov. Rick Perry answers press questions at the National Right to Life convention.

New in The Texas Tribune

•    Perry to Announce "Exciting Future Plans" on Monday: "Gov. Rick Perry has sent an email to close friends saying he will announce his 'exciting future plans' on Monday in San Antonio. … In the email obtained by The Texas Tribune and first reported by CNN, Perry invites supporters to join him and his family for an announcement at mid-day Monday in San Antonio. He does not specify a location for the announcement, and says details will follow."

•    Livestream: House Committee Takes Abortion Testimony: The day after thousands of protesters swarmed the state Capitol — most opposing new restrictions on abortions in Texas — a House committee is meeting to take public testimony on the omnibus bill.

•    Transportation, Criminal Justice Bills Headed to Senate: "Six hours before a marathon state House committee hearing on abortion, two Senate committees quickly kicked out less controversial bills on transportation funding and criminal justice reform to the full Senate on Tuesday morning."

•    A Chance to Get Some Attention, for Better or Worse: "For officeholders who could be on the ballot in 2014, the summer could rend or mend their chances. Here's a look at who stands to gain or lose."


•    Texas abortion bill: Nearly 2K wait to testify (Politico): "Close to 2,000 witnesses turned up on Tuesday to testify on a controversial abortion bill under consideration in the Texas Legislature, and nine overflow rooms have been reserved in the state capitol building in Austin, officials said."

•    Davis popular, but Gubernatorial bid a long shot (Public Policy Polling): "PPP's new Texas poll finds that Wendy Davis made a good impression on voters in the state last week — but that Rick Perry has also enhanced his political standing considerably over the last five months, making him tough to beat for reelection. 39% of Texans have a favorable opinion of Davis to 29% with a negative one after her week in the spotlight. … Nevertheless Davis would trail Rick Perry by 14 points in a hypothetical match up, 53/39."

•    GOP sits out Texas abortion fight (Politico): "The liberal side of the Texas abortion showdown has the two most powerful Democrats in Washington squarely in its corner: Barack Obama and Harry Reid — not to mention a Dixie Chick. On the right: Rick Perry’s holding down the fort without much obvious help from national Republicans. The RNC hasn’t latched onto the fight. Few national Republicans have weighed in. And a key party official in Texas acknowledged there’s no behind-the-scenes help coming, though he says he doesn’t need it."

•    Feds send $2.8 million to Texas to encourage enrollment in children’s health program (Houston Chronicle): "The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced today that millions of dollars in grants will go towards enrolling children in health coverage programs, with $2,808,191 going towards Texas organizations."

•    Rep. Filemon Vela quits Congressional Hispanic Caucus to protest lawmakers’ acceptance of border ‘militarization’ (San Antonio Express-News): "Texas Rep. Filemon Vela, who represents a South Texas border district, resigned from the Congressional Hispanic Caucus in protest of the group’s embrace of a Senate immigration bill that contains millions of dollars for drones, fences and border agents, officials said Tuesday."

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