Off the Kuff Rotating Header Image

Posts under ‘Show Business for Ugly People’

On pot and potties

Two more poll results to note. Opposition to legal marijuana is dropping in Texas, with fewer than one in five respondents to the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll saying they are against legalization in any form. Support for marijuana only for medical use has dropped over the last two years, but support for legalization […]

Trump approval

The Trib does its poll thing. In his second month in office, President Donald Trump is getting overwhelmingly good grades on his job performance from the state’s Republicans, according to the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll. Trump is popular enough to cast positive light on Russian President Vladimir Putin, a world figure who turns […]

Abbott shakes fist at NFL

Seriously? Gov. Greg Abbott is blasting the NFL for raising the prospect that Texas’ so-called “bathroom bill” could impact future events in the state — wading into a debate he has so far mostly steered clear of. “The NFL is walking on thin ice right here,” Abbott told conservative radio host Glenn Beck on Tuesday. […]

How all that activism is being received

Texas Monthly looks at the recent spate of rallies and visits to Texas elected officials’ events and offices to see what’s up. John Simpson and Mark Leech had never participated in a protest before last month. In fact, the couple—who got married in Temple last June—wasn’t particularly political before the 2016 election. They became concerned, […]

Nancy Drew – I mean, Dan Patrick – and the case of the missing jersey

Seriously? Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick asked the Texas Rangers and Houston Police Department to team up in finding New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady’s football jersey, which was stolen Sunday night after the Super Bowl, according to an emailed news release. “In Texas we place a very high value on hospitality and football,” Patrick wrote. […]

More on the STAR Voting System

The Chron updates us on the latest in modern voting technology. The drumbeat of election rigging and foreign hacking of voting machines have energized ongoing efforts to develop a new model of digital election equipment designed to produce instantly verifiable results and dual records for security. Election experts say this emerging system, one of three […]

Abbott goes authoritarian

I suppose this shouldn’t surprise me, but it is still shocking, even in the world we now inhabit. Gov. Greg Abbott said Wednesday that he and state lawmakers will pursue legislation that would “remove from office any officeholder who promotes sanctuary cities,” raising a new consequence as Republicans crack down on local officials who do […]

Marching

In Austin. Up to 50,000 activists swarmed the Capitol grounds on Saturday to fight for women’s rights on the heels of Trump’s inauguration. The high-spirited crowd joined more than a million protesters nationwide. The Austin march was so large that the front of the rally, which left from the Capitol and traveled down Congress Avenue, […]

Abbott says something about bathrooms

Typically wishy-washy of him. Gov. Greg Abbott is adopting a wait-and-see approach about anticipated legislation that would prohibit transgender people in Texas from using the bathroom that corresponds with their gender identity. “I have not seen any proposed legislation yet,” a characteristically cautious Abbott told reporters Tuesday at the Capitol. He added that there are […]

So now what for Julian Castro?

Whatever he wants to do, which probably doesn’t include anything in 2018. Just a few short months ago, Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro appeared to stand a decent chance of becoming the next vice president. A few weeks ago, the San Antonio Democrat looked poised to assume another high-ranking executive role in a […]

The latest abortion hysterics

Good grief. Women who are feeling pressured by their parents or partner to have an abortion are being advised by the state to pick up the phone and dial 911, according to a new pamphlet the state released Monday. The Combined Law Enforcement Associations of Texas is not pleased, saying such calls could impede the […]

The costs of the “fetal remains” rule

This is going to cost a lot of people a lot of money. State health officials have contended that the “minimum costs in complying with the rules” would total $450 a year per health care facility, arguing that those costs would be offset by the elimination of the cost of landfill disposition. But Michael Land, […]

The thing you need to know about the guy behind the “three million illegal votes” claim

He’s a known liar and grifter. When President-elect Donald Trump tweeted Sunday — without evidence — that “millions” of people voted illegally in the race for the White House, he invited a wrath of condemnation for again stoking doubts about the U.S. election system. But in Texas, he found at least one fan: Gregg Phillips, […]

“Fetal remains” rule goes into effect

Cue up that next lawsuit. Texas’ proposed rules requiring the cremation or burial of fetal remains will take effect Dec. 19, according to state health officials. Despite intense outcry from the medical community and reproductive rights advocates, the state will prohibit hospitals, abortion clinics and other health care facilities from disposing of fetal remains in […]

SBOE rejects that lousy Mexican-American studies textbook

Nice. The State Board of Education voted 14-0 Wednesday to deny the adoption of a Mexican-American studies textbook decried by opponents as racist and inaccurate. The textbook, titled “Mexican American Heritage,” was the only submission the board received when it made a 2015 call for textbooks for high school social studies classes, including Mexican-American studies. […]

As long as we’re talking about improving our voting machines

Then this is what we should be talking about. [Travis] County Clerk Dana DeBeauvoir called Rice University computer science professor Dan Wallach, who has been poking holes in voting-machine security for years. He’s testified before Congress on the subject. Now DeBeauvoir wanted him to design a new one. “Wow,” he says. “That doesn’t happen very […]

Some Republican women unhappy about Sid Miller

Noted for the record. For many female Texans working in Republican politics, last month’s release of a video showing GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump boasting about groping women was bad enough. They have since watched in astonishment as male elected officials from their own state have engaged in coarse rhetoric of their own. The simmer […]

Stan Stanart talks election security

I have a few thoughts as well. Over the course of the presidential race, concern has grown about digitally safeguarding election results. New cyber security threats seem to emerge monthly. Republican Donald Trump has repeatedly contended the presidential election will be “rigged.” And suspected Russian hackers have broken into computer systems of the Democratic Party. […]

The next abortion lawsuit should be on its way

We were warned it would need to happen. Despite intense outcry from the medical community, reproductive rights advocates and funeral directors, Texas isn’t budging on a proposed rule to require the cremation or burial of fetal remains. Following an initial public comment period that sparked medical concerns and a legal threat, Texas health officials have […]

Obamacare: Still working

Down doobie doo down down… Texas’ rate of uninsured people fell to 17.1 percent in 2015 as part of a steady decline in the share of uninsured residents following the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, according to new Census estimates released Tuesday. The state’s rate of uninsured fell two percentage points from 2014 to […]

Patrick whines about NCAA decision to pull events from North Carolina

Poor baby. Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick criticized the NCAA on Tuesday for its decision to pull seven of its championship events from the state of North Carolina. The action came after North Carolina passed a law regulating the use of restrooms by transgender people. The bill also excluded gender identity and sexual orientation from […]

Documenting the ways that proposed Mexican-American Studies textbook sucks

Read the report. Saying that a proposed Mexican-American studies textbook is “dripping with racism and intolerance,” several educators and students are calling for the State Board of Education to reject the controversial book. “It is an utter shame we must deal with racially offensive academic work,” State Board member Ruben Cortez Jr., D-Brownsville, said Tuesday […]

Paxton says he will meet with transgender child’s family

It’s a start, I guess. Attorney General Ken Paxton has pledged to meet with the Denton family of a transgender boy, even as his office continues its legal fight against federal school bathroom guidelines that the family supports. Paxton was asked Monday by KXAS-TV (NBC5) if he would take up the Briggle family — including […]

We won’t have Robert Morrow to kick around any longer

Valar morghulis, y’all. The brief, zany tenure of Travis County GOP Chairman Robert Morrow came to an end Friday, as party officials made clear the conspiracy theorist abandoned his post by running for president and he accepted their conclusion without question. Inside a nondescript office park in Austin, party officials convened reporters to lay out […]

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 […]