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The Evening Brief: Sept. 20, 2013

Your evening reading: Cruz pushing Senate Republicans to block funding bill; Cornyn says he opposes government shutdown over Obamacare; two Texas congressmen leave immigration talks

U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, decries Obamacare at a Capitol press conference on April 1, 2013.


•    Ted Cruz’s block-the-vote strategy (Politico): "Only amid the chaos of a looming government shutdown could it make sense for lawmakers to oppose a bill they support. But that’s exactly what Sen. Ted Cruz and his conservative allies are trying to persuade Republicans to do in the Senate. The Texas senator is asking Republicans to stand united to block a procedural vote next week on the House’s spending bill that defunds Obamacare. Cruz and others are wary of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s ability to strip out the Obamacare language by a majority vote if the continuing resolution advances past a pair of 60-vote threshold procedural votes."

•    Cornyn opposes government shutdown over defunding Obamacare (Austin American-Statesman): "Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, said Friday he opposes shutting down the government over defunding Obamacare. 'I know that some people are discussing filibusters, but I actually think we’re at the point now where we can’t shut down the government — it’s like burning down the house to get rid of the mice or rats,' said Cornyn, the number two Republican in the Senate."

•    DeLay may sue Travis County district attorney after court overturns conviction (The Dallas Morning News): "Former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, reveling in victory Thursday against Texas prosecutors in a money-laundering case, said his political career is over but he’s eager to return to the courthouse. If he can find a lawyer 'with a backbone,' DeLay said, he’ll considering suing the Travis County district attorney for the eight-year legal clash that ended with an appeals court tossing his conviction."

New in The Texas Tribune

•    New Immigration Bill Filed; 2 Texas Lawmakers Leave Talks: "As the co-chairmen of the Congressional Border Caucus introduced an omnibus immigration bill Friday, two Texas congressmen left a House group working on immigration after saying they could no longer trust the president."

•    A Conservative Maverick Tries to Stay in the Picture: "If Debra Medina doesn't run for comptroller in 2014, it will be because of a lack of money, not will. The former gubernatorial candidate said grass-roots supporters can't contribute enough funds to wage a serious statewide bid."

•    Texas Eyes PACE Loans to Boost Energy Efficiency: "A diverse coalition is racing to institute a plan to increase energy and water efficiency upgrades that supporters say could help Texas improve its conservation record."

•    Gender Gap Emerges as 2014 Ballot Starts to Fill: "It's easy to see how gender might become a point of contention in an election where Democrats accuse Republicans of waging a war on women — starting with the number of women running statewide on the two parties' tickets."

•    West Texas State Representative Won't Seek Fourth Term"State Rep. Tryon Lewis, R-Odessa, announced Friday that he is retiring from the Texas House at the end of his current term."

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Politics John Cornyn Ted Cruz