Tag Archives: The Lege

Early voting for the May primary runoffs begins Monday

From the inbox: Harris County Clerk Teneshia Hudspeth announces that early voting for the May 28 Primary Runoff Elections starts on Monday, May 20. Be aware that these elections offer only five days of early voting. Voters can cast their … Continue reading

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More on the improper use of funds allegations against Mike Miles

Other outlets are on this now. A state lawmaker and Houston teachers are calling for Houston Independent School District Superintendent Mike Miles to be investigated after a Spectrum News report revealed that millions in Texas public school tax dollars may … Continue reading

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Of course there’s a court case that could upend IVF in Texas

Whether it gets to the Supreme Court or not is the key. The Texas Supreme Court is considering whether to take up a case that could have Alabama-esque impacts on in vitro fertilization in Texas. What began as a Denton … Continue reading

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A “WTF, HISD?” roundup

Expect more protests later this week. Houston ISD families plan to protest Saturday morning near City Hall as word of forced principal and teacher departures rip through campuses as the end of the first year since state takeover approaches. Community … Continue reading

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On really playing the Lottery

Fascinating story. By the April 22 Lotto Texas drawing last year, it had been seven months since a player hit a jackpot. Because the pot keeps growing until someone matches all six numbers, the long drought meant the grand prize … Continue reading

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My interviews and Q&As for the runoffs

Early voting begins Monday, May 20, for the primary runoffs. Yes, I know, we just finished voting for the HCAD/SD15 special elections, but here we are again, and we’ll have one more after that for the HCAD runoffs. So get … Continue reading

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Multiple schools protest Mike Miles

The people are angry. Roughly 200 parents and students started their day protesting in front of Meyerland Performing and Visual Arts Middle School, one of many Houston ISD campuses sent into turmoil last week with news that their principal was … Continue reading

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More on the coming HISD cuts

I repeat, this is going to suck. An undisclosed number of Houston ISD teachers and principals received notices this week that they will be out of a job, state-appointed Superintendent Mike Miles said Thursday. Miles said principals have begun making … Continue reading

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One last pre-election look at those Appraisal Board elections

From the Trib, which did the initial reporting that informed me of these dumb new elections in the first place. The new law requires only counties with more than 75,000 residents to hold the elections, a designation that applies to … Continue reading

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Here come the deepfakes

Here already, and we’re not ready for them. A recent “deepfaked” ad targeting House Speaker Dade Phelan could inspire further legislation to crack down on doctored imagery in political ads. At the end of Monday’s hearing of the House Select … Continue reading

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The problem with Texas’ anti-porn law

Here’s a good explanation of the issue from Slate. After a federal district court judge found that the law likely violated the First Amendment rights of the plaintiffs—led by the adult film trade association the Free Speech Coalition—the 5th Circuit … Continue reading

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SCOTUS leaves anti-porn law in place for now

No emergency intervention, but the appeal on the merits is still ongoing. The Supreme Court refused on Tuesday to block a Texas law that seeks to limit minors’ access to pornography on the internet by requiring age verification measures like … Continue reading

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Tarrant County DA still wants to prosecute Crystal Mason

What an asshole. Tarrant County District Attorney Phil Sorrells wants Crystal Mason’s illegal voting conviction reinstated, his office announced Thursday. Mason, a Tarrant County resident, was acquitted of an illegal voting charge last month. Sorrells’ office is now asking the … Continue reading

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Texas Medical Board’s abortion guidance is a mess

I have three things to say about this. Doctors who perform life-saving abortions may soon be required to document whether they first tried to transfer the patient to another facility to avoid terminating the pregnancy, a move some say goes … Continue reading

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A brief history of May elections in Harris County

As previously noted, early voting begins today for the special HCAD and SD15 elections. I have said before that we are not used to voting in May in Harris County and that because of that and because of the annoyingly … Continue reading

Posted in Election 2024 | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

The Chron covers the HCAD elections

At long, long last. Most Houston-area property owners likely are unaware that the amount of taxes they owe is decided, in part, by a group of local appraisers overseen by a little-known board of directors. But for the first time … Continue reading

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Book ban law stays blocked

Good. Key portions of a law signed last year by Gov. Greg Abbott requiring booksellers to rate books for sexual content when selling to schools will not go into effect after the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday declined … Continue reading

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Chron overview of the HD139 runoff

While I hope that the Chron runs overviews of all of the primary runoffs, I really hope they run at least one freaking story about the HCAD special election. Angie Thibodeaux is an affordable housing consultant who wants to make … Continue reading

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RNC scales down Hispanic outreach efforts

Fine by me. A Hispanic outreach center that the National Republican Committee opened on San Antonio’s Southeast Side in 2021 is among numerous minority outreach offices across the country that have been shuttered for the 2024 election cycle. Democrats say … Continue reading

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The STAAR test will be graded by AI this year

Surely something like this was inevitable. Students sitting for their STAAR exams this week will be part of a new method of evaluating Texas schools: Their written answers on the state’s standardized tests will be graded automatically by computers. The … Continue reading

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Several Dem legislators want to investigate HISD

We’ll see if this goes anywhere. Several Houston-area Democratic legislators are calling for a formal hearing to address “potential violations of state law” in Houston ISD in the aftermath of the Texas Education Agency stripping elected leaders from the school … Continue reading

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“Reverse redlining”

Very interesting. A novel legal argument is at the heart of a federal lawsuit against the sprawling Colony Ridge housing development in Liberty County that could prove a test case for similar claims around the country, experts say. The lawsuit … Continue reading

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The Fifth Circuit has its merits hearing on SB4

This is the big one. A federal appeals court heard arguments Wednesday from Texas and the federal government about whether it should continue blocking a new Texas law that would let state police arrest migrants suspected of entering the U.S. … Continue reading

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Influencer disclosures

I approve of this. Texas’ top campaign finance watchdog gave initial approval last week to a proposal that would require social media users to disclose if they are being paid to share or create political advertisements. The Texas Ethics Commission’s … Continue reading

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Crystal Mason’s conviction for illegal voting overturned

Justice at last. A Texas appeals court on Thursday overturned the illegal voting conviction of Crystal Mason, who was given a five-year prison sentence for casting a provisional ballot in the 2016 election while on supervised release for federal tax … Continue reading

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Appeals court upholds injunction that halted DFPS investigations of trans kids’ families

From the inbox: Today, the Texas Court of Appeals, Third District, upheld injunctions in two related cases against the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) and Commissioner Masters, barring them from implementing the agency’s rule expanding the definition … Continue reading

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Fifth Circuit leaves SB4 block in place

Good. A federal appeals panel late Tuesday night declined to put Texas’s migrant deportation law back in effect, saying the state law seizes powers that are “likely reserved to the United States.” The 2-1 opinion from the 5th Circuit Court … Continue reading

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PFLAG wins injunction against Paxton’s intrusive data requests

From the inbox, as I have not seen any news stories about this yet: The Travis County District Court today granted a temporary injunction blocking the Texas Attorney General’s Office’s latest effort targeting transgender Texans — its demand that PFLAG … Continue reading

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Hope we have enough water this summer

Not looking great for some parts of the state right now. Two consecutive summers of brutal heat and drought have left some parts of Texas with notably low water supplies going into 2024. A wet year or a well-placed hurricane … Continue reading

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Mexico asks Fifth Circuit to keep blocking SB4

They definitely have an interest in this. The Mexican government is urging a federal court to block Texas’ migrant deportation law, arguing it will trample the country’s right to regulate its own borders, terrorize the 2.4 million Mexican nationals living … Continue reading

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Paxton sues two more adult websites

I’m sure he’s got a list. Two more adult websites are facing lawsuits from Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s office over accusations they’re not following the state’s age verification law, the latest effort to legally go after internet porn providers. … Continue reading

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Texas Medical Board issues some guidance on abortion exceptions

Sort of. The Texas Medical Board proposed a broad definition for what constitutes an emergency medical exception under the state’s otherwise strict abortion ban at its meeting Friday, disappointing some abortion rights advocates who were seeking a specific list of … Continue reading

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Rep. Oliverson files for Speaker

Something like this was inevitable. State Rep. Tom Oliverson on Thursday announced a surprise challenge to Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan, condemning his fellow Republican’s “dysfunctional” leadership as he fights for political survival in a May runoff. Oliverson, an anesthesiologist … Continue reading

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Fifth Circuit has its SB4 hearing

More whiplashing. The chief judge on an appeals panel weighing whether to block Texas’ new migrant deportation law appeared skeptical that it does not run afoul of longstanding precedent leaving immigration enforcement solely to the federal government. Questioning the state’s … Continue reading

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