Politics

Politics
9:06 am
Fri July 24, 2015

Appeals Court Rejects One Count in Perry Indictment

Former Gov. Rick Perry during a press conference with his legal team on Jan. 28, 2015.
Marjorie Kamys Cotera/Texas Tribune

From the Texas Tribune: A state appeals court on Friday ruled against one of two counts in the indictment against former Gov. Rick Perry

The 3rd Court of Criminal Appeals in Austin specifically found a problem with the second count, which alleges Perry coerced a public servant. The court upheld the first count, which accuses Perry of abusing his power.

Perry's legal team called the ruling a "clear step towards victory for the rule of law."

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The Ticket
4:30 pm
Thu July 23, 2015

The Ticket: The Summer of Trump

Donald Trump has raced to the top of the GOP polls.
Courtesy the Donald Trump for President Campaign

This week on The Ticket: It's our ALL-TRUMP episode. KUT's Ben Philpott and The Texas Tribune's Jay Root will spend the entire show examining the Republican candidate that's taken over the 2016 race. We'll interview Des Moines Register Reporter Josh Hafner about his coverage of Trump in Iowa. And we'll speak with the chairman of the Federation of Hispanic Republicans, about how Trump's campaign has damaged the relationship between Hispanics and the GOP.

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Politics
2:41 pm
Wed July 22, 2015

Congress to Vote on Sanctuary Cities

Undocumented immigrants are brought back into Mexico.
Bob Daemmrich/Texas Tribune

From the Texas Tribune: Republicans in Texas who grouse that the federal government doesn’t enforce immigration laws might soon have Congress to thank for beefing up enforcement at the state and local levels.

The U.S. House is on track to vote later this week on legislation that would cut off federal funding for cities that don't enforce immigration laws. 

Most members of Congress interviewed by The Texas Tribune on Tuesday had not yet read the legislation — dubbed the Enforce the Law for Sanctuary Cities Act — but said they were considering it ahead of the likely Thursday vote. 

“I think we need to obey the law, but I want to see what sort of language they have on it,” said U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar, a Laredo Democrat.

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Texas Standard
2:58 pm
Tue July 21, 2015

The Rich and Disturbing History Of American Political Demagoguery

Michael Signer speaking to MSNBC about his new book.
MSNBC via http://on.msnbc.com/1VmeW8n

From Texas Standard:

Former Texas Governor and 2016 Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry recently confronted Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign, calling it an act of "Trump-ism," which he defined as “a toxic mix of demagoguery and nonsense.”

Michael Signer wrote a book on demagoguery, “Demagogue: The Fight to Save Democracy From its Worst Enemies.” He’s also commented on various news sites about the topic. Signer shared his thoughts on demagoguery and its relation to the current political race for the presidency with the Texas Standard.

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Texas Standard
2:31 pm
Tue July 21, 2015

Donald Trump: Political Figure or Pop Icon?

Donald Trump at CPAC 2011 in Washington, D.C.
Gage Skidmore/flickr

From Texas Standard

Some say the crowded contest for the 2016 GOP presidential nod is more spectacle than substance. While there are plenty of candidates to cover, the lion’s share of the spotlight has fallen on someone who’s never even held elected office: Donald Trump.

Huffington Post editors say that Trump's run is more entertainment than politics, so they recently announced that there will be no more Trump in the politics section. Instead, they say, news about Trump and his campaign will go straight to the entertainment section.

Ryan Grimm, Washington bureau chief for the Huffington Post, says the online publication has always been a mix of high- and low-brow news. 

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The Ticket
1:28 pm
Thu July 16, 2015

The Ticket: Breaking Down the Scott Walker Campaign

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker kicks off his Presidential campaign
courtesy Scott Walker for President campaign

This week on the podcast: The Texas Tribune's Jay Root and KUT's Ben Philpott break down the campaign announcement speech of Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker. And to help explain even more about the latest entry into the crowded GOP field, we'll talk to Craig Gilbert, the Washington D.C. bureau chief for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and writer of the Wisconsin Voter Blog.

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Politics
1:18 pm
Mon July 13, 2015

Campaign Donations Report a Mixed Bag for Perry

Presidential candidate Rick Perry released his campaign finance numbers over the weekend, and it was a mixed initial report.
Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon/KUT News

Former Governor Rick Perry has yet to separate himself from the pack of Republican presidential candidates in opinion polls — but the pack may be pulling away from him in an important category: fundraising.

The latest campaign finance reports from the presidential field are due Wednesday, and former Texas Governor Rick Perry released his fundraising haul over the weekend. It was a mixed initial report. His campaign only brought in just a bit more than one million dollars. Sure, he’s only been fundraising for a month. But to provide some contrast, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush picked up about $11 million in two weeks.

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The Ticket
2:22 pm
Thu July 9, 2015

The Ticket: Chris Christie Joins the GOP Field

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie launched his Presidential campaign last week.
Chris Christie campaign

This week on the podcast: Ben Philpott and the Texas Tribune's Jay Root break down the campaign announcement speech of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie. And we find out more about the man and what kind of campaign he could run from WNYC and New Jersey Public Radio's Matt Katz, creator of The Christie Tracker blog and podcast.

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Politics
11:21 am
Fri July 3, 2015

Lawyers Threaten to File Complaint Against Paxton For Same-Sex Marriage Response

Texas attorneys are threatening to file a complaint against state Attorney General Ken Paxton for his statement that county clerks who refuse to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples could get pro bono legal representation.
Laura Buckman/Texas Tribune

From the Texas Tribune: Roughly 150 Texas attorneys have signed on to a letter threatening to file a complaint with the State Bar of Texas against Attorney General Ken Paxton for his response to the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on same-sex marriage.

"It seems to us that your edict to encourage Texas clerks to violate a direct ruling of the United States Supreme Court violates" the State Bar's rules requiring attorneys to uphold the U.S. Constitution, the letter states. 

Paxton’s office did not immediately respond to requests seeking comment on Friday morning. After the Supreme Court legalized gay marriage nationwide, he issued an opinion telling Texas clerks they did not have to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples if it violated their religious beliefs — though he suggested that they could face litigation.

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Politics
10:30 am
Thu July 2, 2015

Prosecutors Developing Criminal Case Against Paxton

Prosecutors plan to start presenting evidence next month to a grand jury in pursuit of a first-degree felony securities fraud indictment of state Attorney General Ken Paxton.
Callie Richmond/Texas Tribune

From the Texas Tribune: The potential criminal case against Attorney General Ken Paxton is apparently growing more serious, with the state's top lawyer hiring heavyweight legal counsel of his own as special prosecutors prepare to take felony charges before a Collin County grand jury.

Late Wednesday, special prosecutor Kent Schaffer said he and co-counsel Brian Wice plan to start presenting evidence to the grand jury in less than a month that Paxton violated the Texas Securities Act. 

"We'll be pursuing an indictment for first-degree felony securities fraud," Schaffer said, confirming a WFAA report.

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Same-Sex Marriage
2:35 pm
Mon June 29, 2015

Jim Obergefell: I'm 'Humbled To Be a Part' of Landmark Same-Sex Marriage Case

Jim Obergefell (second from left) celebrates the outcome of his landmark same-sex marriage case at the Texas Capitol.
Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon/KUT News

The plaintiff at the heart of last week's historic Supreme Court ruling legalizing same-sex marriage is trekking the country on a multi-state tour that brought him to Austin today. Jim Obergefell is the named plaintiff in Obergefell v. Hodges.

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Texas Standard
1:59 pm
Fri June 26, 2015

What the Decision on Same-Sex Marriage Means to One Texas Family

'I'm very excited,' says Ronald 'Ronnie' Macklin.
Texas for Marriage/facebook

From Texas Standard:

The Supreme Court issued a 5-4 ruling in favor of same-sex marriage today. All 50 states are now required to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Ronald “Ronnie” Macklin and his partner, Fritz Johnson-Macklin, are one of those couples. From the Austin suburb of Pflugerville, Ronnie joined Texas Standard to talk about his family’s story –  just minutes after learning about the Supreme Court decision.

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Politics
10:20 am
Thu June 25, 2015

Supreme Court: Texas Reinforced Segregated Housing

'We must remain wary of policies that reduce homeowners to nothing more than their race,' wrote Justice Kennedy in the majority opinion handed down today.
Supreme Court of the United States

From the Texas Tribune: The biggest federal housing subsidy program in Texas — which awarded $9.7 billion in tax credits from 1990 to 2011 — effectively has been reinforcing segregated housing, the U.S. Supreme Court found Thursday.

Divided along ideological lines, the high court ruled 5-4 against the state of Texas, which administers the federally backed subsidy program.

"Much progress remains to be made in our Nation’s continuing struggle against racial isolation," Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote in the majority opinion. "We must remain wary of policies that reduce homeowners to nothing more than their race."

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Texas Standard
4:30 pm
Wed June 24, 2015

Family of Texas Kidnapping Victim Influences Shift in U.S. Hostage Policy

The Obama Administration announced Wednesday that families of hostages will no longer be prosecuted for raising ransom money.
barackobamainvirginia-august2nd/flickr

From Texas Standard:

Austin Bennett Tice has been missing since August 12, 2012.

The 33-year-old Texas veteran was working as a freelance journalist in Syria when he was kidnapped while reporting on the war. His whereabouts are still unknown.

To bring their son home, Tice’s father secured a meeting with President Obama. He had heard that the administration was going to review the U.S. hostage policy and wanted a chance to influence the President’s decision with his family’s story.

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Politics
11:21 am
Mon June 22, 2015

Texas Politicians Return Money From White Supremacist

Ted Cruz's campaign said Monday he was giving back $8,500 in contributions from Earl Holt, a white supremacist leader who's donated to many Republican candidates.
KUT News

From the Texas Tribune: A number of elected officials from Texas are parting ways with campaign donations from the white supremacist leader of a group tied to the recent massacre at a church in South Carolina. 

Earl Holt, a Longview man who heads the Missouri-based Council of Conservative Citizens, has given to dozens of Republican candidates and causes across the country, according to federal records. In Texas, he has spread around several thousand dollars over the past four years, state records show. 

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The Ticket
9:40 am
Fri June 19, 2015

The Ticket: Jeb Bush and Donald Trump Join the GOP Race

The Texas Tribune's Jay Root and KUT's Ben Philpott record an episode of The Ticket.
KUT

This week on The Ticket: Two big name Republicans joined the 2016 primary field this week. We'll talk about Donald Trump and Jeb Bush with SiriusXM POTUS channel host Julie Mason. While Ben Philpott and Jay Root will take a deeper dive on the Bush announcement as they break down his speech on Stump Interrupted.

You can listen and subscribe to the podcast on iTunes and Stitcher.

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Politics
2:05 pm
Fri June 12, 2015

The Ticket: What Do GOP Voters Want to Hear?

Rick Perry delivers a speech to voters in Iowa at a 'Roast and Ride' event.
Ben Philpott/KUT

This week on The Ticket: So far, we've spent each week breaking down candidate speeches. This time, we're asking Republican voters in Iowa and South Carolina what they want to hear when they come to a stump speech. And we'll have an interview with Harry Enten of FiveThirtyEight.com about early polls in the 2016 election and how they affect who makes it to the GOP debates.

The Ticket, a weekly presidential podcast from KUT News and the Texas Tribune hosted by KUT's Ben Philpott and the Tribune's Jay Root, breaks down the week's campaign action and brings you interviews with people who make a living working on, covering or commenting on the political campaigns.

Please subscribe to the podcast in iTunes or with your favorite podcast app.

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2016 Election
9:44 am
Tue June 9, 2015

How Will Perry's Indictment Play Among GOP Primary Voters?

Perry speaking before a crowd yesterday at the South Carolina Military Museum in Columbia.
Ben Philpott/KUT

Former Gov. Rick Perry wrapped up his first 2016 presidential campaign swing yesterday with a couple of stops in South Carolina.

The crowds he drew throughout the trip were eager to hear his ideas for border security and the economy, but one looming issue remained undiscussed: his felony indictment in his home state.

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2016 Election
11:53 am
Mon June 8, 2015

How Perry's Targeting the 'Three Essential Elements' of the Iowa Republican Party

Rick Perry speaks to Iowans at the Roast and Ride event in Boone, IA.
Ben Philpott/KUT

Today, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry will hit his third state in three days with a couple of meet-and-greets in South Carolina – he was in Iowa and New Hampshire over the weekend – three states in which he performed poorly during his first presidential run in 2012.

This time, Perry’s hoping to piece together a coalition of voters in order to win the Iowa primary, but first he must appeal to the state's GOP base.

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2016 Election
8:44 pm
Sat June 6, 2015

In Iowa, Perry Looks to Reintroduce Himself

Rick Perry begins a bike ride in front of the Hotel Pattee in Perry, IA
Ben Philpott

The first stop on the official Perry for President campaign was the same place he ended his last Iowa campaign. On the night before the caucus in early January 2012, Rick Perry and a couple hundred supporters gathered at the Hotel Pattee in Perry, Iowa. The enthusiastic crowd hoped they could still make a difference in a flagging campaign.

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