Alexa Ura, Texas Tribune

Shelby Knowles for The Texas Tribune

After largely avoiding discussions so far on proposals to regulate bathrooms, the Texas House will wade into the debate this week with a measure some are hoping will serve as an alternative to the Senate’s “bathroom bill.”

Setting aside the Senate’s proposal, the House State Affairs Committee on Wednesday will take up House Bill 2899, which will be revised during the hearing to ban municipalities and school districts from enacting or enforcing local policies that regulate bathroom use.

Tamir Kalifa

The Texas Senate on Tuesday gave initial approval to a measure allowing county clerks to recuse themselves from signing marriage licenses for same-sex couples because of religious objections.

Qiling Wang for Texas Tribune

Texas Republicans followed North Carolina’s lead earlier this year in unveiling their own “bathroom bill.” Since then, supporters have described the Texas bill as similar to the North Carolina law yet different in important ways.

Shelby Knowles for The Texas Tribune

As North Carolina lawmakers voted Thursday to revise that state's bathroom law, Texas Republicans pushing a similar measure said they are not backing away from their proposal.

Bob Daemmrich for The Texas Tribune

The Texas Senate on Tuesday tentatively signed off on the “bathroom bill” on a 21-10 vote with one Democrat — state Sen. Eddie Lucio Jr. of Brownsville  — voting in favor of the bill.

With the measure scheduled for a committee hearing Tuesday, Texas Republicans are expected to offer a new version of the controversial “bathroom bill” with two significant changes.

Bob Daemmrich for The Texas Tribune

After receiving a letter from Republican state Rep. Kyle Biedermann surveying their beliefs, mosque leaders and representatives of the Texas Muslim community made one request: Get to know us.

Tamir Kalifa

After pressure from Texas GOP leadership, the all-Republican Texas Supreme Court on Friday reversed course and agreed to take up a same-sex marriage case.

Marjorie Kamys Cotera

Ahead of Texas Muslim Capitol Day scheduled for later this month, freshman state Rep. Kyle Biedermann, R-Fredericksburg, sent a letter to mosque leaders and Muslim student associations across the state, asking them to fill out a poll about their beliefs.

Todd Wiseman / Texas Tribune

From The Texas Tribune: The members of the Texas Legislature may be elected to represent all corners of the state, but they’re not necessarily reflective of it.

White lawmakers make up almost two-thirds of the Legislature, but only 43 percent of the state population is white. Men make up half of the state’s population but hold almost 80 percent of the Legislature's seats. Just about any way you slice the numbers, the makeup of the Legislature is at odds with the state.

With the 85th Legislative Session set to gavel in Tuesday, here’s a look at the demographics of the Legislature by lawmakers’ race, gender, age, education and religion.

Bob Daemmrich for the Texas Tribune


After months of sparring over whether transgender Texans should be allowed to use bathrooms that align with their gender identity, Republican Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick on Thursday officially set the legislative stage for the debate.

Todd Wiseman / Texas Tribune

From the Texas Tribune: A Texas judge issued an injunction Saturday against a federal mandate aimed to protect transgender people, finding that the federal health rule violates existing law.

The preliminary injunction, granted by U.S. District Judge Reed O'Connor, is in response to a lawsuit filed by Texas, on behalf of religious hospital network Franciscan Alliance, and four other states in August.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

From the Texas Tribune: After more than a year of delays, Texas is officially kicking Planned Parenthood out of the state’s Medicaid program.

In a move that could affect thousands of low-income women, state health officials on Tuesday delivered a final legal notice to defund the organization from the Medicaid program through which it provides family planning and women’s health services to the poor. 

Tamir Kalifa/Texas Tribune

From the Texas Tribune:

After coming out on the losing end of a United States Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage, Texas Republican leaders are now looking to the Texas Supreme Court to narrow the scope of that landmark ruling.

Erik Hersman/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Mallika Das, a U.S. citizen who was born in India, walked into a Williamson County polling place in 2014 eager to cast her ballot. 

Because she was not proficient in English and had found it difficult to vote in the past, Das brought her son, Saurabh, to help her. They both spoke Bengali, an Asian dialect. But when Saurabh told poll workers he was there to interpret the English ballot for his mother, the duo ran into an unexpected requirement.

Kevin Lamarque/REUTERS

Texas could be on the hook for more than $4.5 million as part of its failed legal battle to defend its 2013 abortion restrictions, which the U.S. Supreme struck down as unconstitutional in June.

Callie Richmond/Texas Tribune

Texas' rate of uninsured people fell to 17.1 percent in 2015 as part of a steady decline in the share of uninsured residents following the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, according to new Census estimates released Tuesday.

The state's rate of uninsured fell two percentage points from 2014 to 2015, but Texas still has the highest percentage of people without health insurance in the country. Texas is also home to the largest number of uninsured people in the country with about 4.6 million uninsured residents. 

Illustration by Todd Wiseman

Ramping up its fight over the rights of transgender people, Texas is expected to file a lawsuit 

Tuesday against the federal government over a regulation prohibiting discrimination against transgender individuals in some health programs. 

Illustration by Todd Wiseman

FORT WORTH — Despite the state's request for an expedited ruling, a federal judge took no action Friday on a request to block the Obama administration's guidelines to accommodate transgender students.

U.S. District Court Judge Reed O'Connor did not issue a ruling from the bench after an almost two-hour long hearing during which state attorneys — as part of a Texas-led, 13-state effort to block the guidelines — argued they unconstitutionally “hold a gun to the head” of states and school districts.

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