The Big Conversation

On Wednesday night, U.S. Sen. John Cornyn told CNN he would not endorse Ted Cruz in a potential primary next cycle.

When asked about a possible showdown between U.S. Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Austin, and Cruz, Cornyn said he is “not going to get involved in any primary races, particularly with my colleagues in the Senate.” He continued, "We'll see what happens, but we've got plenty to worry about between now and November 2016 before we start worrying about November 2018."

As the Tribune’s Patrick Svitek reports, Cornyn’s remarks echo what Cruz said in 2014, when he opted to not comment on primary races and declined to endorse Cornyn during his primary campaign. Although Cruz has not yet commented, Cornyn’s remarks fuel speculation that there may be bad blood between the two men.

After Cruz declined to endorse GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump at the Republican National Convention, McCaul was encouraged by GOP donors and state politicians to consider running against Cruz for the Senate seat. Although McCaul hasn't ruled out running in 2018, he said that challenging Cruz wasn’t his top priority.

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Trib Must Reads

Texas Found 276 Cases of Groundwater Contamination Last Year, by Jim Malewitz — Texas regulators last year documented 276 new cases of groundwater contamination, a slight increase compared to 2014 but far fewer than in years past.

Texas Students Scramble After ITT Tech Shutdown, by Elena Mejia Lutz and Matthew Watkins — More than 3,200 Texas students who were studying at 10 ITT Tech campuses may have to start their educations over. However, they may be able to get student loans forgiven, or switch to community colleges.

Keep Pre-Teens Out of Juvenile System, Texas House Panel Told, by Johnathan Silver — Already facing calls to limit when teenagers are treated as adults in the criminal justice system, Texas lawmakers next year may also see legislation trying to keep pre-teens from being shunted into the juvenile justice system.

Hey, Texplainer: How Similar Were the Florida and Texas Trump U. Cases?, by Patrick Svitek — Hey, Texplainer: I'm hearing a lot about Florida and Trump University, particularly related to a donation Trump gave the state's attorney general. Didn't Texas also have some problems with the school, and didn't Trump also make a controversial donation? Are the two cases the same?

Trump Family to Make Major Texas Fundraising Swings, by Abby Livingston — Donald Trump and two of his children will make separate fundraising swings through the state in the coming weeks.

Senators Consider Texas Nominees for Long-Vacant Judicial Seats, by Julián Aguilar — During a hearing of the U.S. Senate’s Judiciary Committee that convened to consider nominees for five federal district court seats in Texas, the candidates promised senators they would steer clear of becoming activist judges.  

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Feds Accuse Texas of Misleading On Relaxed Voter ID Requirements, by Jim Malewitz —The federal government is accusing Texas of circulating “inaccurate or misleading information” to poll workers and would-be voters about relaxed identification requirements for the November elections. 

University of Texas at San Antonio President to Retire at End of School Year, by Matthew Watkins — Ricardo Romo is leaving the top post at University of Texas at San Antonio after 18 years. He oversaw the university during a time of massive growth. 

Elsewhere

(Links below lead to outside websites; content might be behind paywall)

DMN: We recommend Hillary Clinton for president, The Dallas Morning News 

Apache CEO Crashes Permian Party With ‘Giant Onion’ Oil Find, Bloomberg

State Supreme Court declines to review city same-sex benefits case, Houston Chronicle 

State Rep. Ron Reynolds files for bankruptcy, Houston Chronicle 

Ethics agency ends lawsuit seeking 'dark money' subpoenas against conservative powerbroker, San Antonio Express-News

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Comptroller Hegar says revenue picture worse than predicted, but state can weather itSan Antonio Express-News

House Armed Services chairman: 'I've got concerns' about Trump, Politico

Quote to Note

“I gotta say, I was disappointed to see President Obama stand with Kaepernick and say, ‘That’s right, disrespect the flag.’ That’s not the job of the president. The president should be standing up for America.”

— Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, criticizing President Barack Obama for his support of San Francisco 49ers quarterback, Colin Kaepernick, who has opted not to stand during the National Anthem before games to protest racial injustice

Trib Events for the Calendar

•   San Antonio & the Legislature: The Election and Beyond on Sept. 14 at University of Texas at San Antonio – Downtown Campus

•   Meet the New Guys: A Conversation With Incoming Members of the Texas House on Sept. 15 at The Austin Club 

•   The Texas Tribune Festival on Sept. 23-25 at the University of Texas at Austin

•   The Washington Post's Politics & Pints with Chris Cillizza: TTF Edition on Sept. 24 at Scholz Garten

•   TribFeast: A Dinner To Support Nonprofit Journalism on Sept. 24 at the University of Texas at Austin's Etter-Harbin Alumni Center

•   A Conversation with state Reps. Four Price and John Smithee on Oct. 4 at Amarillo College in Amarillo

•   A Conversation with state Reps. Andrew Murr and Jason Isaac on Nov. 14 at Schreiner University in Kerrville