TribBlog: A Redistricting Compromise?

Republican and Democratic members of the Texas congressional delegation are discussing a possible compromise designed to cool off the overheated politics of congressional redistricting by dividing the expected spoils once U.S. Census figures are in and the reapportionment process begins in 2011, two members of the delegation say.

Full Story 

TribBlog: First Responders

Census Day isn't until tomorrow, but residents in some Texas cities and counties got a significant head start, according to the latest questionnaire response rates.

Full Story

Worse Than Colombia

That's how Texas Department of Public Safety Director Steve McCraw described the violence raging in Mexico’s drug war at a House hearing on Tuesday.

Full Story 
Reform Immigration for Texas Alliance

Remember Immigration?

Lawmakers are reeling from the bruising political battle over health care reform and are loath to take on another divisive issue and additional risky votes. So the prospects remain dim for legislation that would improve border security, provide a pathway to citizenship for millions and crack down on unscrupulous employers — but that doesn't mean everyone's forgotten about it, as the hundreds of thousands of advocates who marched on Washington, D.C., last weekend can attest.

Full Story 
Bob Daemmrich

James Baker Says ...

The former secretary of state talked foreign policy, partisan politics and the national debt at an event co-presented by the Tribune, the Center for Politics and Governance at UT's LBJ School of Public Affairs, and the LBJ Library.

Full Story 
Bob Daemmerich

"The Dumping Point"

Detainees with mental impairments lack proper medical evaluation when they enter the federal immigration detention system and don't get adequate medication and access to social services, according to a new study.

Full Story 
Census Bureau

On the Records: Texas Still Slow on Census

The U.S. Census Bureau today updated its data on how many households had returned the decennial questionnaire. Texas is still seven percentage points behind the national rate — ahead of only Mississippi and Alaska.

Full Story 
U.S. Census Bureau

On the Records: The Census Gets Interactive

The U.S. Census Bureau recently launched an interactive map that makes it easy to track participation in the decennial count of households. The map application, which relies on the Google Maps API, visualizes the participation rates by color — orange for higher rates, and blue for lower rates.

Full Story 
Graphic by Matt Stiles

Down for the Count

As of Friday, three-quarters of Texans hadn't returned their census forms. Only five states have a worse rate of participation so far.

Full Story 

TribWeek: In Case You Missed It

Grissom on the U.S. Supreme Court's decision to stay Hank Skinner's execution, Thevenot on the myth of Texas textbook influence, Rapoport on the wild card who was just elected to the State Board of Education, Ramshaw on the price of health care reform, Philpott on the just-enacted prohibition on dropping kids from the state's health insurance rolls, M. Smith on the best little pole tax in Texas, Ramsey on the first corporate political ad and the reality of 2011 redistricting, Stiles on the fastest-growing Texas counties, Aguilar on the vacany at top of Customs and Border Protection at the worst possible time, Galbraith on the state's lack of renewable energy sources other than wind and its investment in efficiency, and Hu and Hamilton on the runoffs to come in House districts 52 and 127. The best of our best from March 22 to 26, 2010.

Full Story 
Callie Richmond, Caleb Bryant MIller

2010: White Attacks Perry's Border Crime Claims

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Bill White today called on GOP Gov. Rick Perry to remove claims on his public and campaign Web sites that crime on the Texas border has dropped 65 percent. Perry campaign spokesman Mark Miner defended the claims. He said Perry's claim refers to temporary crime drops in discreet areas during so-called "border surge" operations.

Full Story 
Matt Stiles

Redistricting Reality

In 2011, political mapmakers will take the latest census numbers (Texas is expected to have a population of more than 25 million) and use them to draw new congressional and legislative districts. The last time this was done, in 2003, Republican mappers took control of the U.S. House by peeling away seats from the Democrats. This time, Texas is poised to add up to four seats to its congressional delegation — and early numbers indicate bad news ahead for West Texas and other areas that haven't kept up with the state's phenomenal growth.

Full Story