Hot List Day 86

Day 86 of the 82nd Texas Legislature

“We cannot allow flawed data to dilute the voting rights of the Texas Latino community.”
State Rep. Trey Martinez-Fischer, D-San Antonio, on the lawsuit filed by a group of Hispanic lawmakers, arguing the census underreported the number of residents on the border

After weeks of negotiating stalled the controversial sonogram bill, it looks like the measure—a Republican priority this session—is back on track. After a standoff between Senate and House members, a possible deal with one Democratic senator might have cleared the way to passing one of the most rigid sonogram bills in the country, reports Abby Rapoport. 

Now that voter ID legislation has passed in both the House and the Senate, it’s next stop conference committee. Members of each chamber will hammer details and ultimately come up with a consensus on what the final bill will look like. With four of the five Senate appointees being Republican proponents of the bill, voter ID likely won’t have a problem passing, but conference committee member Sen. Leticia Van de Putte, D-San Antonio, told Daniel Setiawan that she intends to continue fighting against some of the bill’s more rigid provisions. 

Sen. Steve Ogden, who chairs the Senate Finance Committee, told reporters yesterday that the biggest problem in our budget is the structural deficit caused by an underperforming business tax. As Peggy Fikac reports, Ogden didn’t mince words about the systemic flaws. “Our biggest problem is our structural deficit,” he said. “We’ve got a tax system that is no longer equal, is no longer uniform and is not very efficient.”

Today thousands of Texans are expected to gather on the steps of the Capitol for the Save Our State rally. A coalition of advocacy groups for social services and education will lead the march against budget cuts made to the state’s most vital programs. 

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Alexa Garcia-Ditta is a staff writer (and former intern) covering women's health, reproductive health and health care access.

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