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The Texas Blue
Advancing Progressive Ideas

The Texas Blue: News

Because Lege News Never Gets Old

Nobody yet knows when or for what, but there will be a special session of the Texas legislature this year.

Rep. Kuempel Collapses

EDIT: 6/2/09: After receiving care at an Austin facility for a life-threatening heart attack, Rep. Kuempel returned to the House yesterday, to everyone's relief. We are very glad to hear of his recovery.

Representative Edmund Kuempel (R-Seguin) was found collapsed and unconscious in a Capitol elevator by a House sergeant-at-arms late last night, the Austin American-Statesman reports.

On HB 710, Texas Students Lose

As with many things related to our State Board of Education, a very important and very disappointing development quietly took place yesterday, this time in the Lege. HB 710, a bill that would make the SBOE subject to Sunset review, went down 71-73 after being read for the third time this session.

Municipal Elections and Swine Flu

Across the state of Texas, we're in the final week of municipal campaigns. Sadly, here in North Texas we're also in a period of ramping up the public sector response to the spread of H1N1 flu (swine flu). The Fort Worth ISD announced earlier this week that they will be closed this week. On Friday, the Lewisville ISD announced that they will be closed this week. Yesterday, the Denton ISD announced that they will be closed this week. All three districts are targeting being open on May 11th.

Garcia Nominated for Assistant Secretary of Navy

Hat tip to the Corpus Christi Caller-Times, by way of Vince at Capitol Annex (who has been covering this story for a while now). President Obama announced today his intention to nominate former HD 32 state representative Juan Garcia for Assistant Secretary of the Navy.

Voter ID Compromise In The House

Emily Ramshaw blogs at the Dallas Morning News' Trail Blazers blog that there is a voter ID compromise floating around the Texas House today. The compromise bill is sponsored by Rep. Todd Smith (R-Euless), the chair of the House Elections Committee.

Paul Burka's "Dear Kay" Post

Paul Burka has quite the evocative post up over at his Texas Monthly blog. The post takes the form of a friendly letter to Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas) raising the merits of a Specter-esque party switch in her potential quest for the Governor's Mansion in 2010.

Sen. Arlen Specter, D-PA

You read that correctly. After some polling out of Pennsylvania showing that the senator may not fare so well in a contested Republican primary, Senator Arlen Specter is to announce today that he is switching to the Democratic Party.

Senator Arlen Specter Switches Parties

Senator Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania has announced that he is switching parties and will run as a Democrat in the 2010 Democratic primary. Once Senator elect Al Franken (D-Minnesota) is seated, this will give the Senate Democrats a 60 seat majority.

Senator John Cornyn (R-Texas), chairman of the NRSC, last week:

Rick Perry Finds the Federal Government Useful...Again

A couple of weeks ago in the run-up to the Tea Parties, we discussed the difference between what Governor Rick Perry says about the Federal government versus what he asks of the Federal government. It turns out that in addition to asking for FEMA's help with wildfires, asking for American soldiers to be sent to the Mexican border and asking for an extension of Federal aid for Hurricane Ike-related cleanup, Governor Perry found another non-intrusive, non-oppressive and non-interfering way for the Federal government to help Texans today.