Gov. Rick Perry Looking To Set Up PAC | KERA News

Gov. Rick Perry Looking To Set Up PAC

Rick Perry wants to use money left over from his failed presidential bid to form a political action committee supporting other candidates.

Perry's campaign has written to the Federal Election Commission asking about forming a PAC or super PAC.

A PAC would allow Perry to raise up to $5,000 from individual donors. Super PACs don't impose contribution limits.

The letter says Perry raised $270,000 for the general presidential election and now is asking donors if that money can be transferred to a PAC since he didn't win the Republican nomination.

It says Perry hasn't decided if the PAC would back one or several candidates.

Signed Monday, the letter says Perry's campaign has received at least $100,000 in refund requests from donors who don't want their money used for other purposes.

AP

Texas judge faces inquiry on wrongful conviction

A Texas judge will face a court investigation into whether he hid evidence as a prosecutor and helped send the wrong man to prison for 24 years.

The Texas Supreme Court's chief justice on Thursday ordered a court of inquiry against state District Judge Ken Anderson. The former prosecutor in Williamson County could face criminal charges if evidence is found he illegally disregarded an order at a 1987 murder trial.

Anderson is accused of not turning over all documents that could have proved the innocence of Michael Morton, who was freed in October after DNA testing showed he didn't kill his wife. Anderson denies wrongdoing.

District Judge Louis Stums of Fort Worth will oversee the court of inquiry, which works a bit like a grand jury.

AP

Judge clears exoneree attorney over legal fees

A judge has ruled that a West Texas attorney who helped wrongly convicted former inmates get state compensation should not be disciplined over claims of excessive fees.

State District Judge Robin Darr said Thursday that the State Bar of Texas failed to prove that Kevin Glasheen's fees were illegal and unconscionable in representing two exonerees cleared in 2008.

The Lubbock attorney faced punishments ranging from a public reprimand to disbarment in a four-day disciplinary hearing.

Glasheen received millions of dollars in compensation from 12 men cleared after DNA evidence showed they were innocent of charges that put some in prison for more than two decades.

Steven Phillips and Patrick Waller filed complaints with the state bar, saying Glasheen's 25 percent contingency fee was too high.

AP

Texas A&M president wants 4 percent tuition raise

Texas A&M officials are proposing an almost 4 percent tuition hike for the upcoming school year.

The Eagle newspaper reports that school President R. Bowen Loftin points to lower state funding and higher student enrollment as reasons for an increase.

If the A&M System Board of Regents approves the 3.95 percent hike, tuition for in-state students would rise by $176 to about $4,600 per semester. Out-of-state tuition would go up $817 to about $24,600.

The school did not increase tuition rates last year.

The board of regents is scheduled to decide on tuition in May.

AP

Napolitano to visit S Texas for border briefing

Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano will visit South Texas next week to review Customs and Border Protection operations.

Homeland Security spokesman Matt Chandler says Napolitano will be in McAllen on Monday and Tuesday. She will receive briefings and observe efforts to secure the border.

The former Arizona governor also will meet with state and local law enforcement officials. Acting CBP Commissioner David Aguilar will join Napolitano.

Texas Gov. Rick Perry has been a vocal critic of the commitment to border security from President Barack Obama's administration, saying more needs to be done.

On Monday, a coalition of Texas border mayors, county administrators and economic development agencies criticized Obama's latest budget proposal for not including enough money to upgrade operations at ports of entry on the border.

AP

Mavericks' Cuban saves St. Patrick's Day parade

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban will be the savior of the city's St. Patrick's Day parade.

Cuban has written a $40,000 check to the local group that puts on the parade. The Greenville Avenue Business Association had announced earlier this month that it would have to cancel the parade without more fundraising.

Cuban says he wanted to do the right thing and save a tradition he's enjoyed in the past. He's also donating to the business association's scholarship fund.

This year's parade is on St. Patrick's Day, Saturday, March 17.

AP

Woman tells jurors she prayed amid torture ordeal

A Texas woman allegedly tortured by a former neighbor says she never stopped praying during the 12 days she was held captive.

The woman testified Wednesday during the trial of Jeffrey Allan Maxwell. He faces up to life in prison if convicted of aggravated kidnapping and two counts of aggravated sexual assault.

Defense attorneys were expected to cross-examine the woman Thursday.

Prosecutors say Maxwell abducted her last March and drove her 100 miles away to his home in Corsicana. That's where he is accused of torturing her on a deer-skinning device and chaining her to a bed.

She finally escaped by running outside when Parker County authorities went there to question Maxwell about the woman's disappearance.

The woman told jurors she thought she was going to die during the ordeal.

AP