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The Brief: Trump Wins, Cruz Marks Substantive Finish in N.H.

Billionaire Donald Trump convincingly won the New Hampshire GOP presidential primary on Tuesday, with Iowa winner Ted Cruz running a half-point ahead of Jeb Bush for third place.

Republican Presidential Candidate and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz speaks with supporters in Hollis, New Hampshire after his third place finish in the primary on Feb. 9, 2016.

The Big Conversation

Billionaire Donald Trump convincingly won the New Hampshire GOP presidential primary on Tuesday, with Iowa winner Ted Cruz running almost a half-point ahead of Jeb Bush for third place.

After finishing second behind Cruz in Iowa, Trump was in need of a strong showing to reestablish his frontrunner status and New Hampshire voters gave it to him. He took more than 35 percent of the vote and was up nearly 20 points on the second place finisher, Ohio Gov. John Kasich.

Cruz was further behind with 11.5 percent, followed closely behind by Bush with 11.1 percent. Marco Rubio had 10.6 percent of the vote, hurt by a poor showing in Saturday’s presidential debate.

The Tribune’s Abby Livingston reports that Rubio’s “showing throws a new wrench into the fight for Texas GOP donors.

“Some of the big-money state Republicans were all but ready to cut their loyalties to Bush in favor of Rubio, based on bullish expectations for the Florida senator. But his stumbles Saturday night at the most recent GOP debate and New Hampshire showing might change that.”

For Cruz, Livingston wrote that nothing much changes for him: the Feb. 20 primary in South Carolina remains more central to his strategy. He will be in the Palmetto State Wednesday morning.

His third place finish, though, could have dealt a “death blow” to other candidates in the field who needed to do well in New Hampshire, Livingston wrote.

Trib Must Reads

Analysis: Is a Move From the Texas House to the Senate a Clear Promotion?, by Ross Ramsey — Moving from the Texas House to the Texas Senate makes sense, but not for every politician: One current candidate for Senate — and a potential future one — each has more clout in the House than he or she would have in the Senate.

With 4 Candidates in Health Care, Senate Race Stirs Unique Debate, by Edgar Walters — In a Republican primary cycle dominated by talk of illegal immigration and national security, four of the six candidates for an open state Senate seat have ties to the health care industry.

In San Antonio, A Familiar Uresti-Madla Ballot, by Alexa Ura — The upcoming face-off between state Sen. Carlos Uresti of San Antonio and Helen Madla, the widow of the senator Uresti defeated in 2006, flips the script on a storied battle between two prominent San Antonio families.

U.S. Supreme Court Blocks Obama's Clean Power Plan, by Kiah Collier — The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday granted a request from Texas and more than two dozen other states to block President Obama’s Clean Power Plan.

Email Shows Dukes Directed State Staff to Work on Festival, by Terri Langford and Madlin Mekelburg — When state Rep. Dawnna Dukes sent out an email to her staff last month, her urgent instructions about an upcoming project made clear what she wanted. But the email from the Austin Democrat had nothing to do with state business.

The Day Ahead

•    The House Public Health Committee meets at 9 a.m. in the Capitol extension. The committee will study the state’s preparedness for public health threats and emergencies, examine the history of telemedicine, look at the adequacy of technological infrastructure and hear testimony.

•    The House Corrections Committee meets at 9:30 a.m. in the Capitol extension. Lawmakers will study recidivism and hear testimony.

•    The Senate Education Committee meets at 9 a.m. at Quinta Mazatlan in McAllen. Senators will hear testimony about placing cameras in classrooms and be briefed by locals on English language learning.


Bill would allow N.Texas reservoir to bypass federal regulators, The Dallas Morning News

UH said to decline role in planning use of UT Houston land, Houston Chronicle

Mother of ‘affluenza’ teen won’t have to pay Tarrant County for extradition expenses, Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Facing off for third time in House race, Ratliff and Rinaldi battle over conservative credentials, The Dallas Morning News

Changes made to transport plan for papal visit, El Paso Times

Lujan takes the oath in state House District 118, San Antonio Express-News

Questions, costs grow as Austin council probes affordable housing deal, Austin American-Statesman

Abortion rights activists say their support is growing in Texas, San Antonio Express-News

Judge orders Texas Racing Commission to halt vote on historical racing, Austin American-Statesman

Quote to Note

“And for Pete's sake, we don't need more deals.”

— U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, taking swipes against Republican rival Donald Trump in New Hampshire.

Today in TribTalk

Forget it, Ted. It’s Iowa., by Brian W. Smith — If U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz wants to continue his success in the Republican presidential primaries, he needs to pivot to New Hampshire and put his Iowa campaign behind him.

Trib Events for the Calendar

•    A Conversation with Sen. José Menéndez on Feb. 11 at the Austin Club

•    The Ticket: A Live Recording and Democratic Primary Debate Watch Party on Feb. 11 at KUT Public Media Studios in Austin

•    A Conversation with Sen. Eddie Lucio Jr. and Rep. Jose Manuel Lozano on Feb. 25 at Texas A&M University-Kingsville

•    Live Post-Primary TribCast on March 2 at the Austin Club

•    Protecting Houston Before the Next Big Storm on March 3 at San Jacinto College Maritime Technology and Training Center in La Porte.

•    A Conversation with Sen. Carlos Uresti and Rep. Poncho Nevárez on March 23 at Sul Ross State University in Alpine

•    Symposium on Transportation on March 29 at Texas A&M University in College Station

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