Politics | KERA News

Politics

Political news from North Texas, across the state and beyond.

Christopher Connelly / KERA News

For 13 years, Lupe Valdez was the Dallas County sheriff. She spent decades in law enforcement jobs before that. So when Valdez kicked off her campaign for governor, she started her speech with a joke.

From Texas Standard.

If you’re loyal to a particular political party, have you – or a fellow Democrat or Republican – at least thought about voting in the opposing party’s primary? Maybe for a person you think would be a weaker candidate in the general election? Or maybe just to “mess” with the “other team”?

The #metoo movement is getting a mixed reaction in Texas, but a majority of the state’s voters believe increased attention to sexual assault and harassment is going to improve the lives of most women, according to the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll.

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez/KUT News

In this primary election, voters will decide who appears on November's general election ballot. From now until March 2, you can cast your ballot at any polling place in the county where you’re registered. But on Election Day, most Texas voters have to go to their assigned polling place. (That's unless you’re in one of the counties participating in a special program.)

Graphic by Emily Albracht for The Texas Tribune

Texas Republican voter opinion turned against the FBI and special counsel Robert Mueller even before last week’s mass shooting in a Florida high school and indictments of Russian propagandists who tried to influence American elections, according to the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll.

Illustration by Emily Albracht for The Texas Tribune

The most reliable indicator of whether a Texan thinks Donald Trump has what it takes to be president is the party that voter identifies with, according to the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll.

 

Republicans are full of praise. Democrats are full of scorn.

CHRIS EUDAILY / TPR News

The midterm elections are often the overlooked middle child of any election cycle. But while they don’t get as much press as races during presidential election years, the stakes are high.

Illustration by Anthony Truong-Nguyen

Gov. Greg Abbott and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick are far ahead of their Republican primary opponents in the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll, but the Democrats running for those two high offices face more difficult paths to their party’s nomination.

Leslie Boorhem-Stephenson for The Texas Tribune

Texas may be a red state, but for at least the weekend, it served the role of a battleground for two party leaders determined to put their spin on President Donald Trump's agenda in the lead-up to the midterm elections. 

Marjorie Kamys Cotera / Texas Tribune

Russian nationals working to interfere with the 2016 presidential election visited Texas in 2014, spread derogatory information against U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz during the Republican primary and posed as Americans while communicating with a person “affiliated with a Texas-based grassroots organization,” according to an indictment issued Friday.

Laura Buckman for The Texas Tribune

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, is aligning with President Donald Trump in highlighting the lack of evidence in recently issued indictments that Russia's government colluded with Trump's 2016 campaign to influence the election. 

Rodger Mallison/The Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Tarrant County Judge Glen Whitley is angry.

The county's top elected official ignited a political firestorm a week ago when he said the state is refusing to pay what it should for public education, and he accused legislators of blaming local officials for raising property taxes.

Christopher Connelly / KERA News

Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price is just back from a trip to the nation's capital. She was the only Texan at Monday’s White House ceremony where President Trump unveiled his $1.5 trillion infrastructure plan.

Marjorie Kamys Cotera

Attorney General Ken Paxton, who has been fighting securities fraud charges for most of his first term, collected $84,000 in gifts last year to help pay for his legal defense, he says in a newly released financial disclosure statement.

From Texas Standard.

Candidates all over the Lone Star State are pouring their hearts, souls and resources into their campaigns. The primaries in Texas are only three weeks away.

While resources are a major challenge for every candidate, that’s particularly true for those with little name recognition. Some organizations like Emily’s List and Annie’s List are making money available to the record number of female candidates running this year. but the money is not available to everyone.

Is Texas turning blue? That's the question, dream and lie (depending on your point of view) being discussed across the state.

It's the dream of Democrats, who haven't won a statewide office in Texas since the early '90s. It's a big lie, say Republicans, who argue support for President Trump has been more positive in Texas than in most of the country.

Video: A Conversation With Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings

Feb 11, 2018
The Texas Tribune

Watch video of Friday evening's conversation with Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings, moderated by Evan Smith, co-founder and CEO of The Texas Tribune.

Campolo and Powell courtesy candidates/Burton: Bob Daemmrich

Two years ago, Beverly Powell and Allison Campolo found themselves on opposite sides of a question dividing Democrats across the country: What kind of Democrat do you want?

From Texas Standard:

On March 6, Texas will hold the first primary contests in the nation this year. If patterns emerge in the statewide results, the primaries could set the tone for contests in the rest of the country.

When it comes to congressional races, a number of retirements among Texas Republicans has resulted in packed fields of candidates vying to replace them. And campaign committees from both national parties have been hesitant to endorse candidates.

Shutterstock

Former President George W. Bush said on Thursday that "there's pretty clear evidence that the Russians meddled" in the 2016 American presidential election, forcefully rebutting fellow Republican Donald Trump's denials of Moscow trying to affect the vote.

Updated at 4:52 p.m. ET

Senate leaders reached a bipartisan budget agreement to increase military and domestic spending levels for two years, paving the way for the first long-term spending pact since President Trump took office.

The White House and House Speaker Paul Ryan quickly declared support for the pact, helping pave the way for its passage by the end of the week, despite opposition from fiscal hawks and liberal Democrats.

In a tweet, President Trump claimed the largest audience ever tuned in for his State of the Union address. That's not true.

Updated on Jan. 31 at 12:47 a.m. ET

President Trump sought to strike a unifying tone with his first State of the Union address, but some of his rhetoric on immigration and his promise to put "America First" was clearly aimed at his base.

Annette Elizabeth Allen for NPR

President Trump delivered his State of the Union address to Congress Tuesday evening, followed by the official Democratic response, by Rep. Joe Kennedy of Massachusetts.

Journalists across the NPR newsroom annotated those remarks, adding fact-checks and analysis in real time. 

Jump to Democratic response

Gus Contreras / KERA News

Texas will hold the nation’s first primary election on March 6.

The primary will determine the party nominees for the November midterm elections. Midterms are typically lower turnout elections, but they can have an outsized impact because they can change electoral maps, depending on the outcome of state and congressional races.

Christopher Connelly / KERA News

“If you’re disappointed by your elected officials, grab a clipboard, get some signatures and run for office yourself.”

That’s what Barack Obama told his forlorn supporters in his farewell address last year as he prepared to leave office. One group that seems to have taken that message to heart are the people who worked in his administration.

Bob Daemmrich for The Texas Tribune

The State Republican Executive Committee voted to censure Texas House Speaker Joe Straus, R-San Antonio, on Saturday, dinging the outgoing state leader for standing in the way of the party leadership group's priorities.

Updated at 8:22 p.m. ET

Real estate and casino magnate Steve Wynn relinquished his duties as finance chairman for the Republican National Committee on Saturday after The Wall Street Journal reported an alleged pattern of sexual misconduct and sexual assault involving employees of Wynn Resorts.

Shutterstock

In just three and a half weeks, Texans will begin voting in the nation's first political primary of the year.

And the stakes will depend on what happens next. Just this week, we came out of a federal government shutdown. Now, there's a lawsuit in Dallas County to remove more than 120 Democratic candidates from the state's primary ballot.

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