The legislative session continues apace with much activity this week!
This morning, Governor Rick Perry delivered the State of the State address in the House Chamber. He reported that Texas is strong, and laid out a plan of action for this legislative session and budgetary process that will help Texas stay strong in the teeth of a national economic downturn. For the full text of his remarks, click here to read his speech.
Other items of note this week include:
UPDATE ON DAN NEIL ELECTION CONTEST
The Dan Neil campaign issued the following statement last night:
Today was the last day of our hearing before the special master in our election contest in House District 48. Currently, we are down by 3 votes with a margin of error of 4 illegal voters. We also have voters who have lived outside the district for 2 years or more who voted in this election and voted for Donna Howard, while their voter registration was on suspense.
At this point, it is clear that we do not know who the winner of this election is. The only possible remedy is a new election.
The next step in the process is that Master Hartnett will report his findings to the committee by Friday. We will see what the Master reports and we will make a determination about our next step at that time. We intend to fight for this seat until the end.
Thank you for all your prayers and support.
SONOGRAM BILL MOVES TO COMMITTEE
Senate Bill 16, authored by State Senator Dan Patrick and relating to informed consent to an abortion, will be debated at a public hearing tomorrow morning, Wednesday, February 9th in the Senate Chamber. Chairman Robert Duncan of the State Affairs committee will allow public testimony limited to three minutes per person. The public is also allowed to provide written testimony to the committee.
For the full text of the bill, click here.
To watch the committee by streaming video, click here.
The RPT platform language on the sonogram bill: “We urge the Texas legislature in its next biennial session to enact legislation requiring a sonogram be performed and offered as part of the consent process to each mother seeking an elective abortion.”
RESULTS OF RPT LEADERSHIP SURVEY ON CASINO GAMBLING IN TEXAS
In the last two weeks, the RPT conducted an informal survey of Republican county chairmen and State Republican Executive Committee members, to poll grassroots leaders on their views of expanded casino gambling in Texas. We had excellent participation from our leadership, and the results of the survey are as follows:
- Do you believe that Texas should legalize casino gambling?
71.2% NO – 28.2% YES
- Do you support using revenues from expanded casino gambling to address the budget shortfall?
72.0% NO – 28.0% YES
- Would you be in favor of, or opposed to, having a casino built within your region (30 miles of your home)?
72.0% NO – 28.0% YES
The RPT platform language on gambling: “We continue to oppose gambling as a means of financing state government. Government–sponsored gambling has had a devastating impact on many Texas families. Moreover, we oppose any further legalization, government facilitation, or financial guarantees relating to any type of gambling including casino, riverboat, video lottery terminals (VLTs), slot machine, video keno, eight-liners, multi-state lotteries, and other games of chance including on Indian reservations. We support the repeal of the state lottery, and enforcement of existing laws and regulations related to gambling. We oppose dedicating any government revenue from gambling to create or expand any governmental program.”