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Posts under ‘Show Business for Ugly People’

Voter fraud: Still a myth

Just a reminder, in case you needed one. Politicians and voting rights advocates continue to clash over whether photo ID and other voting requirements are needed to prevent voter fraud, but a News21 analysis and recent court rulings show little evidence that such fraud is widespread. A News21 analysis four years ago of 2,068 alleged […]

Voter registration numbers keep increasing

Always good news, though it’s hard to say anything definitive. County elections officials across Texas are reporting a spike in registered voters this election cycle, with one county now exceeding one million registered voters for the first time ever. Earlier this week, Bexar County Elections said they surpassed 1 million registered voters, according to News […]

Auditor asked to investigate Heidi Group health care grant

Good. The left-leaning nonprofit Progress Texas is asking the state auditor’s office to investigate a $1.6 million state contract awarded to an anti-abortion group under the state’s new Healthy Texas Women program. […] The Heidi Group does not currently provide medical services or employ medical staff, but founder Carol Everett has said that her group […]

Texas finds a new way to be hostile to women’s health

I feel like it must be someone’s job somewhere to come up with stuff like this. A group led by an anti-abortion advocate appears to be one of the largest recipients of state funding from the “Healthy Texas Women” program, which lawmakers recently created to help women find health care services paid for by the […]

As goes Pasadena

If Texas Democrats ever figure out the secret of getting more Latinos engaged in the voting process, it’ll be in places like Pasadena where they find the key. When Oscar Del Toro tries to persuade his fellow Pasadena Latinos to vote, he appeals to them on practical and emotional levels. Practical: If you and your […]

Rick Perry still toadying for Trump

Dude must really need a job. Former Gov. Rick Perry says he is open to serving in the administration of presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, his former rival in the race for the White House. “They know that I will come and help if the role is something I’m passionate about, that I’m knowledgeable […]

From the “You can dish it out but you sure can’t take it” files

Poor baby. After years of Texas trying to lure businesses away from other states, New York has struck back — with an ad that paints the Lone Star State as unwelcoming and discriminatory to the LGBT community. The two-minute ad released by New York’s chief economic development agency highlights the Empire State’s principles of inclusion […]

Ken Paxton does not approve of transgender bathroom policies

Big surprise, right? Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton on Tuesday issued an opinion saying the Fort Worth school superintendent who made headlines for formulating guidelines to accommodate transgender students exceeded his authority. Paxton also said that a portion of the guidelines instructing district employees not to out transgender students to their parents might violate state […]

On Dan Patrick’s hostility to the LGBT community

Ross Ramsey sums up the Dan Patrick tweetorrhea situation and tries to make sense of it. Lately, the lieutenant governor has been focused on transgender Texans and which bathrooms they should use — those of their identity or those of the gender listed on their birth certificates. His argument is that perverts — men, to […]

Hotze and Woodfill take their hate statewide

These guys, I swear. The conservative organizers who helped topple Houston’s equal rights ordinance are pledging a $2 million advertising campaign against Target over the big box store’s transgender bathroom policy. Jared Woodfill and Steven Hotze of Conservative Republicans of Texas on Thursday launched the new “Campaign for USA” in what they described as an […]

Don’t know much about international relations

Sheesh. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Tuesday continued his campaign against the controversial Iran nuclear deal, urging fellow governors nationwide to ignore President Obama’s suggestion to lift economic sanctions. In a two-page letter, issued after he met in Dallas with Israeli Ambassador Ron Dermer, Abbott urged his colleagues in other states to strengthen existing sanctions, […]

Elsewhere in the local control follies

Well, at least it’s not about bathrooms. El Paso is billing its effort to provide the indigent and undocumented with new municipal ID cards as a way to enhance public safety and build community. Republican Gov. Greg Abbott seems to see it another way. “We are going to ban sanctuary city policies,” the governor tweeted […]

Patrick doubles down on potty politics

It’s potties all the way down. Declaring that “this fight is just beginning,” Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick on Tuesday escalated his battle against guidelines in Texas and across the country that allow students to use the bathroom that corresponds with their gender identity. Speaking to reporters at the Texas Capitol, Patrick announced a number of […]

More on severance pay and the Land Commissioner’s office

The law doesn’t apply here. After reports of state agencies keeping former employees on the payroll after they stopped working, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and other agency heads have taken heat for stretching the rules on paid “emergency leave” to keep the ex-workers on the books. But when 26 employees were paid for an […]

The Sugarek/Jeffery family is back together

Wonderful news. Seven weeks after Child Protective Services caseworkers removed the boys following their foster mothers’ repeated complaints about suspected abuse by an older sibling living elsewhere in foster care, a CPS supervisor brought them back. The move followed a contentious court hearing and a series of private meetings in which the mothers say CPS […]

You get a severance! And you get a severance!

Everybody gets a severance package! Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush has spent nearly $1 million in taxpayer money to entice dozens of people fired by his administration to agree not to sue him or the agency, a practice that may run afoul of a ban on severance pay for state workers. Bush, a first-term […]

The Sheriff and Lord High Executioner of Edwards County

In case you haven’t already, you really need to read this: The first thing she noticed was Sheriff Pamela Elliott standing across the street. It was an August evening in 2014, and Rachel Gallegos had just gotten home for a meeting of the Edwards County Democratic Party. The law enforcement official was a highly unlikely […]

What, me worry?

Ken Paxton? Sid Miller? Meh, no big deal. Gov. Greg Abbott is steering clear of the legal problems swirling around two of his fellow Republican statewide officials, saying he does not know the facts of their cases and expressing little concern about their ability to serve. Speaking Wednesday afternoon with reporters, Abbott kept his distance […]

Sugarek/Jeffery foster family update

From Lisa Falkenberg: The drab little courtroom off the square in Wharton, with its blond wood, stoic flags and idle metal detector at the door, seemed like an alternative universe. Two Houston foster mothers who entered Thursday with anticipation and profound concern for the little boys recently removed from their home were jolted back by […]

Ken Paxton would like to remind you that he really is running for re-election

We all understand that’s what this is about, right? Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton warned Target this week that the company’s restroom policy could lead to criminal activity and demanded the retailer supply his office with its safety policies, stepping up his fight against transgender access to public accommodations of their choice. In a letter […]

Your increasingly regular Sid Miller update

What a piece of work this guy is. For years, a sticker affixed to more than 170,000 gas pumps in Texas featured a straightforward headline — “Fuel Feedback?” — alongside a toll-free number, email address and instructions for consumers with questions. But in his latest effort to remake the embattled Agriculture Department, Commissioner Sid Miller […]

Business as usual with the Texas Enterprise Fund

Raise your hand if this surprises you. In July of 2013, Gov. Rick Perry announced that he had closed another deal. Chevron would build a 50-story tower in downtown Houston next to one of its existing office buildings. The $662 million capital investment was slated to create 1,752 high-paying jobs. “The state is providing $12 […]

Why North Carolina and not Houston?

John Nova Lomax asks why Houston has not suffered the same backlash as North Carolina after the repeal of HERO last November. In the aftermath of the repeal of Houston’s Equal Rights Ordinance in November, the bill’s proponents predicted dire economic consequences. Then-Mayor Annise Parker predicted a “direct, economic backlash” for the Bayou City. A #boycotthouston campaign […]

Ken who? Sid who?

Whatever you do, don’t mention the indicted Republican officeholders! The Texas attorney general has been indicted for allegedly duping investors in a tech startup, and the agriculture commissioner reportedly used tax dollars to travel to obtain a so-called Jesus shot supposedly offering long-term relief from pain. So far, fellow Republicans are all but ignoring the […]

You’ll take lower pay, ladies, and you’ll like it

From Lisa Falkenberg; Over at the Wall Street Journal, a 25-year newsroom union pay analysis found women earning 13.2 percent less, a finding that prompted the chief executive of parent company Dow Jones and Co. to vow an urgent review of salaries. Back in Texas last week, Gov. Greg Abbott gave a decidedly less urgent […]

The Chron looks at Rodney Ellis

Not a very flattering look. Over the past 26 years, state Sen. Rodney Ellis, D-Houston, has voted to confirm gubernatorial appointments to the Lower Colorado River Authority, a powerful electric utility in Central Texas. During the same time, financial firms he either owned, worked for, or owned stock in have profited handsomely by helping underwrite […]

We haven’t heard the last of TMF

He’ll be back. State Rep. Trey Martinez Fischer says he laments nothing about a failed gambit for the state Senate that will end his 16-year stint with the Texas Legislature. The boisterous San Antonio Democrat, however, is leaving office at the end of the year with a message: Don’t write off his political career just […]

More Congressional seats are likely on the way

If current trends continue, that is. Texas could pick up two, perhaps three, new congressional seats following the 2020 decennial Census if current population growth continues through the decade, political and demographic experts said Thursday. With continued growth in Texas’ four major metropolitan areas, they said, the state could almost match the gains it made […]

Paxton’s hack hire

What else do you expect? When Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton named Jeff Mateer as his new first assistant earlier this month, conservatives lauded him for a legal background that’s highlighted by his work on religious-liberty cases. But Mateer’s background is drawing fire from those who champion gay rights and church-state separation, particularly since the […]

Sid Miller and the Jesus Shot

I have three things to say about this. Less than a month after taking office, Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller flew to Oklahoma City with a top aide, billing the taxpayers at least $1,120 for flights and a rental car, budget records show. At the time, Miller said he made the trip to tour the […]

Abbott lies about vote fraud

Ross Ramsay calls him out for it, much more politely than I would have. The governor of Texas thinks that fraud in the electoral system that put him and others in office is “rampant.” He can’t back that up. Greg Abbott was asked on Monday what he thought about President Obama’s throwdown last week on […]

Dan Wallach: The case for not letting everybody vote by mail

You know who Dan Wallach is by now. Voting systems and security are in his wheelhouse, and when he sent this to me in response to this, I was happy to queue it up. Vote by mail (VBM) is cheaper! It’s more enfranchising! Take your time and do it right! Yes, indeed, and why not […]

If you don’t have ID, you probably can’t get it

Just another reminder that our voter ID law sucks. At the time, civil rights groups and Democrats pointed out that hundreds of thousands of Texans lacked a driver license or other government-sanctioned forms of photo ID, and that cost and access could be a barrier to acquiring them. In one of the few concessions to […]

The case for letting everyone vote by mail

The Washington Monthly in an article written by a former Secretary of State for Oregon, lays it out. Presidential elections still attract a majority of America’s voters. For all other elections, however, democracy is mostly a spectator sport. In the 2014 midterms, just 83 million registered voters cast ballots—a nosedive of almost 10 million from […]