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The Evening Brief: Aug. 14, 2013

Your evening reading: Perry supporters launching new national group; Stockman invites Obama-mocking rodeo clown to Texas; Senate candidate attacks Davis in new video ad

Gov. Rick Perry discusses the merger of UT-Pan American and UT-Brownsville in a speech in Brownsville on July 16, 2013.

Culled

•    Rick Perry supporters organize to raise money for national campaign (The Dallas Morning News): "Top supporters of Gov. Rick Perry have started to build the infrastructure that will help the governor spread his message and test the waters of another presidential run. Austin lobbyist and former Perry chief of staff Mike Toomey with top contributor Brint Ryan sent out a notice today to contributors of Make Us Great Again that they’re gearing up another group. The new organization will help tout Perry and the economic model he’s championed in Texas."

•    Steve Stockman invites clown to Texas (Politico): "Republican Rep. Steve Stockman has invited the controversial rodeo clown who wore an Obama mask in the Missouri rodeo to perform in his home state of Texas. 'Liberals want to bronco bust dissent. But Texans value speech, even if it’s speech they don’t agree with,' said Stockman. 'From Molly Ivins to Louie Gohmert and every opinion between, Texans value free and open political speech. I’m sure any rodeo in Texas would be proud to have performers.'"

•    GOP rival Tom Pauken blasts Greg Abbott’s suit against AA merger (The Dallas Morning News): "Tom Pauken criticized Attorney General Greg Abbott for joining with the U.S. Justice Department in a suit challenging the merger of American Airlines and US Airways. Texas, along with five other states, the District of Columbia and the justice department sued to stop ther merger on the grounds that it would diminish competition and potentially shut down air service in some Texas towns."

•    Lawmakers encounter dead body while touring Texas-Mexico border (Houston Chronicle): "Rep. Michael McCaul amplified his demand for stronger border protections after he and two other Congressmen encountered a dead body during a tour of the U.S.-Mexico border last week."

•    Michael Steele: Impeachment talk 'asinine' (Politico): "Former Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele said Tuesday that Rep. Blake Farenthold was 'flat wrong' when he claimed there are enough votes in the House to impeach President Barack Obama, and Steele said doing so would give away the 2014 election to Democrats."

New in The Texas Tribune

•    Biggest Ethics Reforms Died on Governor's Desk: "A few minor ethics measures passed in the 83rd legislative session. But the real story is what didn’t happen — the legislation that might have changed the information available to voters who’ll be making decisions about candidates."

•    Burton Attacks Davis on Abortion in New Ad: "In a video ad featuring her adoptive daughter, Konni Burton, a GOP contender for state Sen. Wendy Davis' Fort Worth seat, attacks the filibustering Democrat for her stance on abortion."

•    Now that we've (finally) made it through the 83rd legislative session, all eyes turn to 2014, where the statewide elections feature more open seats than any ballot since 1990. Our new 2014 Elections landing page has you covered. 

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