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Posts Tagged ‘Louisiana’

Sixth Circuit stands up for inequality

It was bound to happen eventually. Remember the big no-decision decision the Supreme Court issued on same-sex marriage just a month ago? The justices were asked — in five separate cases no less — to weigh in on whether same-sex couples have a constitutional right to marriage. The Supreme Court demurred on the question, which […]

Abbott’s appellate response brief is the same old junk

Pathetic. Attorney General Greg Abbott says Texas’ same-sex marriage ban should remain in place because legalizing it would do little or nothing to encourage heterosexual couples to get married and have children. Writing in a brief filed to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday, Abbott said the state was not obligated to […]

Of course the film industry thinks we need more film incentives

It’s all money to them. Why wouldn’t they think the state should provide more funding for them? A Warner Bros. executive told a panel of Texas lawmakers they would have to pony up more cash for film industry incentives if they wanted to be in the movie business. “The Texas movie industry incentive program … […]

Louisiana breaks the streak

One in every crowd, I guess. A federal judge [in New Orleans] upheld the state’s ban on same-sex marriage on Wednesday, going against what had been a unanimous trend of federal court decisions striking down such bans since the Supreme Court ruled on the matter last year. In his ruling, Judge Martin L. C. Feldman […]

Just a reminder that “more gambling” does not necessarily mean “more revenue”

If Atlantic City can go bust… The winning streak has run cold for Atlantic City, N.J. Earlier this week, the upscale Revel Casino Hotel announced it will close, bringing the total number of casinos in the city expected to close by the end of the year to four. Thousands of workers are confronting unemployment. The […]

If Louisiana can do it…

By “it” I mean expand Medicaid. What’s Texas’ excuse if that happens? Republican U.S. Sen. David Vitter on Monday left open the possibility of expanding Louisiana’s Medicaid program to cover more of the working poor. Vitter, a candidate for governor and ardent critic of the health overhaul championed by President Barack Obama, said he’s not […]

How about those gators?

They’re doing well, with a little help. The largest reptile in America was nearly extinct by the 1970s. But, efforts to protect the American alligator resulted in a conservation success story that led to its removal from the endangered species list in 1987. The Texas State Aquarium uses that story of conservation and action resulting […]

The states that are making life harder for their National Guard members

It’s not just Texas. While a majority of states ban same-sex marriages, most are not fighting the new policy. But Pentagon officials say that in addition to Texas, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma and West Virginia have balked. Each has cited a conflict with state laws that do not recognize same-sex marriages. (A West Virginia official […]

Zack Kopplin

Remember the name Zack Kopplin. Rice University sophomore Zack Kopplin says he has been called the Antichrist, a godless liberal and, bizarrely, the cause of Hurricane Katrina. Kopplin, 19, has gained notoriety for championing the fight against his home state of Louisiana’s 2008 law that made it easier for teachers to introduce creationist textbooks into […]

Are vouchers unconstitutional?

Attorney Kelly Frels makes the case that private school vouchers will not pass constitutional muster in Texas. State Sen. Dan Patrick has proposed that the state of Texas provide vouchers to help parents pay for private school tuition. Vouchers are bad public policy, and they are not permitted by the Texas Constitution. [...] From a […]

The opening argument against vouchers

We’ve been hearing about vouchers since Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst named Sen. Dan Patrick to be Chair of the Senate Education Committee, but we haven’t heard – or at least, I haven’t seen – a lot of information about what exactly that would mean. This Chron op-ed by Ronald Trowbridge brings some facts and figures […]

A matter of priorities

Compare and contrast. State Sen. Dan Patrick, R-Houston, the outspoken voice of the far right in the Senate, said he will be pushing vouchers that parents of school-age children could use for charter schools, online offerings or additional alternatives to the public schools. “To me, school choice is the photo ID bill of this session,” […]

When monkeys are outlawed, only outlaws will have monkeys

Or something like that. Even in their Texas hideout, Jim and Donita Clark are terrified that wildlife agents from their home state of Louisiana will descend on their motorhome and seize the four Capuchin monkeys they’ve reared for 10 years. Four months ago, the couple fled before authorities showed up at their house for an […]

The black bears return to Texas

Very cool. SOMEWHERE IN BLUE ELBOW SWAMP — Hope, sometimes, is based on the strangest things. Here, deep in the near-impenetrable thickets of the Sabine River basin, it rides on sardines and tampons soaked in pastry filling. That exotic bait, researchers anticipate, will lure the elusive black bear out of hiding, leaving behind exciting evidence […]

Outsourcing inmates

We know Sheriff Adrian Garcia has a plan to fix problems with the Harris County jails. He’s been up front about what he wants to do, and he’s helped create the position of “jail czar”, who is tasked with finding ways to reduce the jail population for the long term. As such, I presume, and […]

Our friend the stimulus package

Jason Embry tells us just how much Texas relied on the stimulus package this year. A new report from the National Conference of State Legislatures shows that federal stimulus dollars played a large role in allowing Texas lawmakers to balance their budget this year without tapping Rainy Day Funds. The national group asked states to […]

How much money would expanded gambling generate?

Throughout this session, every time the subject of expanded gambling in Texas comes up, along with it comes some kind of projection of how much revenue it might generate. Those estimates always come from the proponent of that form of expanded gambling, and as expected are wildly optimistic. For example: Texas Insider, February 13: “Our […]

Two stories about gambling

The Chron’s David Barron talks to some experts about putting slot machines at horse tracks, which is one of several major proposals to expand gambling in Texas this legislative session. William Eadington, an economics professor at the University of Nevada and director of the university’s Institute for the Study of Gambling and Commercial Gaming, questions […]