Entries in Texas (85)


Texas House to Vote on 'Sonogram Bill'

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(AUSTIN) -- The Texas House of Representatives will vote Wednesday on the so-called "sonogram bill," which requires women having abortions to see the ultrasound image, hear the baby's heartbeat, and wait 24 hours.

The bill has polarized legislators, with mostly Democrats providing dissent and a largely Republican support. The measure has been described as a guilt procedure by critics.

If the bill is passed in the house, then it will be fused with a similar proposal passed by the Senate in February. Texas Gov. Perry has expressed his support of the bill.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Former Rep. Frost: ‘At Least Two’ New Texas Seats Will Go Democratic

Photo Courtesy - ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- Texas was the big winner in the 2010 Census, with the latest count of the population set to deliver four additional House seats to the heavily Republican Lone Star State.

But that doesn’t necessarily straight GOP pick-ups in the 2012 congressional elections.

On ABC’s Top Line Thursday, former Rep. Martin Frost, D-Texas, who has focused extensively on census and redistricting matters for years, said that because so many of the new Texans are Latinos who tend to vote Democratic, Texas is likely to send several new Democrats to Congress.

“At least two of the seats are gonna be [majority] Hispanic -- might even be more than that, we'll see how it plays out. At least two, and maybe three” of the new seats are likely to be held by Democrats, Frost said.

He also added that Republicans will want to secure their recent gains in House races by putting more Republican-leaning voters in already GOP-held districts. And, he said, GOP lawmakers in Texas are limited in the gerrymandering they can pursue because of special oversight by the Justice Department, to ensure equal treatment of racial and ethnic minorities.

Frost cast skepticism on whether the legislative burst we’ve seen in late 2010 can carry over into 2011.

“I hope so, but with a Republican House, it's gonna be a lot harder to have real bipartisanship,” he said. “You still have a Democratic House here [in the lame-duck session of Congress] and so, this is gonna be much tougher. I hope it can happen, but I wouldn't bet too much on it.”

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio


Tea Party Express Brings Message to Suburban Texas

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(ARLINGTON, Texas) -- The so-called Tea Party Express bus tour - headed from California to New Hampshire - has made it half-way across the country.

"You cannot spend your way out of a deficit and you cannot borrow your way out of debt," said Tea Party Express co-founder Howard Kalookian at a rally in suburban Fort Worth. "They've given us trickle-up poverty and what we want are borders, language and culture."

The group hopes to bolster the campaign of Republican Texas Governor Rick Perry who faces a tough challenge from Democrat Bill White in next Tuesday's election.

After stops in 28 cities, the bus tour concludes in Concord, New Hampshire, the day before the midterm elections.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio


In Texas, Democrat Bill White Rallies on College Campuses

Photo Courtesy - Bill White for Texas(AUSTIN, Texas) -- Democrats are busy trying to get young voters out to help head off Republican gains Nov. 2, and the Texas gubernatorial race is no exception.

Hundreds of students and Austin Democrats gathered Wednesday in front of the University of Texas tower.  Longhorn Students for Bill White teamed up with the University Democrats Tuesday night to host “Bill White’s Rally to Restore Competence,” discussing issues ranging from education to Texas unemployment rates.  The rally kicked off with UT student government representative Jeremy Yager urging students to vote in the following two weeks.

“Let’s move Texas forward and finally restore competence to the governor’s mansion,” Yager said.

Student involvement isn’t new for the White gubernatorial campaign, which has set up more than 40 student-run Bill White groups across college campuses statewide.  It’s a more aggressive approach than that of Republican candidate Rick Perry, whose campaign contacted already established student conservative groups, such as the Young Conservatives of Texas.

According to the Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement, only 17 percent of 18-to-29-year-olds voted in the last Texas governor’s race in 2006, whereas 45 percent of people older than 30 years old voted.

Cameron Miculka, public relations representative for UT’s University Democrats group, says combating voting apathy on college campuses is the main focus this year.  Clubs use their own resources to pass out flyers, set up information tables, make phone calls and even go door-to-door.

“A vote from a student has just as much importance as anyone else,” Miculka said.  “When they see that a candidate is coming to their school to speak to them about education reform it really resonates, he isn’t just a face on television.”

Not everyone in the audience walked away convinced, however.

Kevin Cissell, a 20-year-old pre-med student, asked White a few questions after the rally concerning the future of higher education.  His main concern -- Texas cutting 25,000 students from the Texas (Towards Excellence, Access and Success) Grant.

“You cut grants that are helping people like myself, poor students who are trying to just go to college, that’s cutting opportunity for the future,” Cissell said.

Early voting in Texas began Monday and will continue until October 29th.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio


Texas Governors' Race Goes National as Parties Eye Long-Term Gains

Photo Courtesy - ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- It’s not a state where national Democrats tend to spend heavily, but that is changing in this election cycle. Democrats are eyeing the opportunity to recapture the Texas governor's seat for the first time in 15 years, in a race that could have an impact on national elections for years to come.

Texas, the second largest state in the country, is expected to gain four House seats -- the most of any state -- according to private firm Election Data Services, which analyzed Census Bureau population estimates. The national interest in Democratic candidate Bill White's campaign makes the race unlike any other in recent Texas history. White is the top recipient of in-state and out-of-state donations among all Texas candidates, according to data collected by the Center for Responsive Politics. The Democratic Governors Association considers this to be a “top tier” pick-up opportunity and the group has poured in $2 million into White's campaign.

The Texas election also gives a good insight into the Hispanic vote. The group voted overwhelmingly for George W. Bush but the immigration debate and the hoopla over the social sciences curriculum earlier this year could shift the tide in favor of Democrats.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

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