Archive for January, 2018

Daily Digest: Jan 22

Our daily digest is an update on the stories we’re following in Texas politics today. Here’s what we’re working on for 7pm:


Congress pass bill to end government shutdown:

Congress voted to reopen the government Monday evening. The House followed the Senate in approving a bill and Trump’s quick signature is expected. We’ll have the latest on what led to the negotiations and how Texas lawmakers are responding.


School Finance Fix?:

Turning to an ongoing Texas showdown – Tuesday a newly-formed school finance commission will meet for the first time to begin looking at ways to fix what’s been deemed a broken system.

It coincides with “school choice” week — the push to allow public funding to flow to private schools.

The battle over the two issues sunk any school finance fix last session.

Our Max Gorden will have the latest on how school choice advocates are continuing to try to be part of the school finance discussion.


Sen. Uresti trial begins:

There’s a lot on the line for Democratic State Senator Carlos Uresti. His criminal fraud trial began Monday in San Antonio.

Uresti faces felony charges of fraud and money laundering. Our John Garcia is following the trial and will have the latest on day one.


Dallas County Republicans file lawsuit to kick 128 Democrats off ballot:

There’s an effort in Dallas County to kick 128 Democrats off the March primary ballot.

The County Republican party has filed a lawsuit that alleges the County Democratic Party Chair did not sign the petitions of the 128 candidates before sending them to the Texas Secretary of State’s office.

That’s required by state law.

Democrats decried the lawsuit as an attempt to disenfranchise minority voters.

State Representative Eric Johnson is one of the candidates named in the lawsuit..

He issued a statement saying in part, “This is just the latest attempt by Texas Republicans to take away the ability of minority voters to elect candidates of their choice.”


On the agenda:

The Quorum Report’s Harvey Kronberg joins us live to discuss the Dallas County ballot debate and what’s next after the government shutdown.


Bulletproof vests for Texas police:

Thousands of Texas law enforcement officers are becoming better protected.

Earlier this month — Gov. Greg Abbott announced the state was doling out nearly $23 million in state grants to help 453 agencies provide bulletproof vests.

The money equips around 33,000 officers with rifle-resistant vests designed to protect against high caliber rounds.

That covers more than 40 percent of licensed law enforcement officers in the state.

The grant program was created by lawmakers last year after a sniper killed five Dallas police officers protecting a Black Lives Matter march in 2016.

“They’re a good thing. They’ll protect the officers,” Charley Wilkison, executive director of the Combined Law Enforcement Associations of Texas, said. “They’re something that should have and could have been done a long time ago and it took a crisis, a tragedy in Dallas to get it done and we’re proud to have supported it.”

Hear more from Wilkison, including his push to extend the program permanently, at 7.


Capital Tonight airs weeknights at 7 on Spectrum News.



Posted by Karina Kling



Daily Digest: Jan. 5

Our daily digest is an update on the stories we’re following in Texas politics today. Here’s what we’re working on for 7pm:


Texas has nation’s first primary:

Texans love to be bigger and better than other states in the nation and in this election year, the Lone Star State earns another title: first to vote.

Texas will be batting lead-off in this year’s primary season, with early voting starting February 20.

At 7, hear why election experts say Texas results could forecast how this midterm election season will go nationally.


Chairmen Hinojosa and Dickey square off:

The chairmen of the state Republican and Democratic parties join us at 7 to discuss the 2018 primaries, the crowded field of candidates and how the Trump effect could play into this midterm. Plus, hear their take on the legal battle over removing Congressman Blake Farenthold’s name from the primary ballot.


Noose found on Central Texas Congressional candidate sign:

A Central Texas congressional candidate said she found a noose hanging around one of her campaign signs.

Dr. Christine Eady Mann is running as a Democrat in the District 31 race. She said the property owners where the campaign sign stands notified her about it Thursday.

It’s since been taken down, but Mann says the noose is “symbolic of the hate” that still exists in Texas.

“I do have an African American Campaign Manager, I’m a woman,” Mann said. “I think that there are a lot of people who feel threatened when women, especially black women make their voices heard. ”

Mann said the incident hasn’t made her fearful for her safety. She said it’s simply fueling her to campaign harder.


PolitiFact Texas:

Gardner Selby of PolitiFact Texas is in to put Democratic gubernatorial candidate Lupe Valdez and Republican Land Commissioner candidate Jerry Patterson to the truth-o-meter.


Fire and Fury fallout:

President Trump is waging a two-front battle Friday against a new bombshell book that details the turmoil within the White House and against a report that lays out new details in the Russia investigation. We’ll have the latest from Washington at 7.


Join us for these stories and more at 7 on Capital Tonight.



Posted by Karina Kling



Daily Digest: Jan. 2

Our daily digest is an update on the stories we’re following in Texas politics today. Here’s what we’re working on for 7pm:


Congress’ to-do list includes DACA, funding government

Congress is up against a long to-do list as members return to Capitol Hill this week from the holiday break.

Some of the must-tackle items: funding the government and deciding what to do about the status of so-called Dreamers.

At 7, the latest on where lawmakers stand on the issues.


Cornyn says DACA deal will be done by deadline

Texas’ Senior Senator says he thinks Congress will reach a DACA deal by the March deadline. Sen. John Cornyn told reporters in Austin Tuesday that he believes President Trump did the right thing by placing the issue back into the hands of Congress.

“I do believe we will get this done before the March Deadline…and I hope the President does not extend it because that puts the pressure on us and I think that Congress tends to respond when it’s put under pressure,” Cornyn said.

Cornyn was also asked about President Trump’s first year. He called it “pretty successful” but added the President’s tendency to unload on Twitter often “undermines his own effectiveness” and creates “uncertainty.”


Willett takes oath for 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals

Texas Supreme Court Justice Don Willett was sworn in to the 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals Tuesday. It marks his official move to the federal judiciary.

Willett was nominated by President Trump last September. The conservative Texan is a prolific tweeter who was unofficially named the “Tweeter Laureate of Texas.”

Willett says he’s already toned down the tweeting as he prepares to join the panel in New Orleans.

“My title today has changed from justice to judge, but my task has not,” Willett said during a ceremony in Austin. “Judging according to the rule of law is a sacred trust.”

James Blacklock was also sworn in Tuesday. He’ll replace Willett on the Texas Supreme Court.


Julian Castro launches new PAC

A prominent Texas Democrat has launched a political action committee that aims to boost party gains nationally and statewide.

Former Housing and Urban Development Secretary and San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro publicly launched the Opportunity First PAC Tuesday.

Castro has said the PAC will support party efforts to take control of the US House and make gains in state legislatures for Democrats before the next round of redistricting in 2021.

And while Castro has repeatedly said he has not made a decision on a run for president, candidates considering it often get involved in such mid-term election campaigns.


On the Agenda

The Quorum Report’s Harvey Kronberg joins us at 7 to weigh in on Castro’s new PAC and the speculation about a 2020 presidential run.


Races to watch in 2018

As the new year begins, we take a look at the big Texas races to watch. From the race for governor to Congress and on down the ballot, political reporters Scott Braddock of the Quorum Report and Mike Ward with the Houston Chronicle weigh in.


Capital Tonight airs weeknights at 7 on Spectrum News.

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