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The Brief: In poll, most Texans say "bathroom bill" isn't an important issue

More than 50 percent of Texans say regulating bathroom use is not an important issue for the Texas Legislature.

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and Sen. Lois Kolkhorst R-Brenham give the media an update on SB6 The Texas Privacy Act also known as the "bathroom bill" on Feb. 6, 2017

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Tribune today

Most Texans aren't convinced regulating bathrooms is an important issue
But according to the latest poll, most do support the "bathroom bill."

Texans take a hard line on immigration and refugees
They favor bans on Syrian refugees, blocking travel from certain countries and outlawing "sanctuary" cities.

Texas leaders won't allocate the money needed to solve the state's sex-trafficking crisis
The state’s top leaders have remained silent on whether they'll provide more resources for victims — or more funding for the crippled child welfare system that’s supposed to protect vulnerable kids.

Support for marijuana growing like a weed in Texas
Texans are more open to legalizing marijuana — and not just for medical use.

Texans want a health care program that’s not called Obamacare
The Affordable Care Act is unpopular, but Texans don't want to get rid of it until they know what's going to replace it.

Texas school districts struggle to recruit bilingual certified teachers
More students are enrolling in bilingual education programs across the state, but districts have budgeted for a smaller workforce of bilingual educators.

House committee hears bills on child welfare
Advocates and families testified all day in front of House Human Services Committee members as legislators buckled down to look at key bills that would overhaul how the state takes care of endangered children.

Most Texans in Congress not planning in-person town halls over recess
Few of the 38 Texans in Congress plan on reaching out to constituents at in-person public forums during this congressional recess.

What you need to know

More than 50 percent of Texans say regulating bathroom use is not an important issue for the Texas Legislature, according to the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll

  • But most Texans support what the "bathroom bill" would do. Fifty-four percent of people surveyed said Texans should use the public restrooms based on their birth gender.
  • Republicans are more likely to support the "bathroom bill" than Democrats. Seventy-six percent of Republicans say transgender Texans should use the restrooms that match their birth gender, while 51 percent of Democrats said gender identity should be the standard.

Other stories we're watching today:

News from home

Help us report on sex trafficking in Texas: Over the past five months, The Texas Tribune has investigated the hidden world of sex trafficking. Now, we want to hear about your experiences.

Today: Ask Texas Tribune journalists Neena Satija, Morgan Smith and Edgar Walters about our investigation into sex trafficking in Texas by joining us for a Reddit "Ask Me Anything" chat with a former child welfare investigator.

What we're reading

(Links below lead to outside websites; paywall content noted with $) 

Thousands of demonstrators across US say 'Not My President', The Associated Press

Trump takes new immigration fight to 9th CircuitPolitico

Potential Dallas police and fire pension fix emerging in Texas Legislature, The Dallas Morning News ($)

Professors to protest 'sanctuary cities' bill Wednesday, The Houston Chronicle ($)

UT president calls for town hall after anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim flyers found on campus, Austin American-Statesman ($)

Losses from San Antonio tornadoes, storms could reach $100 millionSan Antonio Express-News ($)

Dallas nonprofit sues Texas over law that lets landlords refuse housing vouchers, The Dallas Morning News ($)

In Trump's volleys, echoes of Alex Jones's conspiracy theoriesThe New York Times ($)

Trump energizes the anti-vaccine movement in TexasThe Washington Post ($)

For your calendar

Join us in person or online Thursday for a conversation with state Rep. John Zerwas, chairman of the House Appropriations Committee.

Quote to note

"Rather than establish new barriers, House Bill 1457 clarifies and affirms the rights of Texas fantasy sports players to participate in this research-oriented game of skill."

— Rodney Anderson, state representative for HD-105, about legislation that affects fantasy sports via TribTalk

The Brief is written and compiled by your morning news baristas, Bobby Blanchard and Sanya Mansoor. If you have feedback or questions, please email We're a nonprofit newsroom, and count on readers like you to help power newsletters like this. Did you like what you read today? Show your appreciation by becoming a member or making a donation today.

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