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Texas senators Cornyn and Cruz plan on taking apart President Obama’s Affordable Care Act, piece by piece, following the Republican Senate takeover. 

It should come as no surprise that the Texas Republican who filibustered an Obamacare funding bill for over 20 hours, is the one vowing to put an end to the president’s signature legislation and kill other legislative efforts by Democrats in the U.S. senate.

In a post-election press conference, the newly elected Republican Governor, Greg Abbott, said it was time to put the election behind and begin the process of getting back to work, that work ranged from border issues, Ebola preparedness and the effectiveness of Gov. Perry’s Texas Enterprise Fund.

For much of this election year there was powerful conventional wisdom about the race for governor in Texas: Democrat Wendy Davis couldn’t win, Republicans couldn’t lose and Texas wouldn’t change.

Now that Election Day has come and gone, it’s clear that that conventional wisdom got a good bit right. But in the eyes of author and commentator Richard Parker, [it] got a good bit wrong as well. 

Republicans swept the statewide elections last night. Already, controversial national issues are on the table for the next session, including immigration, border security, education and health. However, this is good time to be a Republican in Texas. And pundits expect at least two people with Texas connections could be preparing themselves for a presidential run. Guessing any names, anyone? 

Ryland Barton, KWBU News

Democratic lieutenant governor candidate Leticia Van De Putte stopped in Waco as part of her final campaign push before next week’s election. Van De Putte is way behind in the polls, but hoping for a surprise surge of voters. She’s been working to show the differences between her and her opponent, Republican State Senator Dan Patrick.


https://www.flickr.com/photos/fragility_v2

Election day is next Tuesday and several Texas statewide offices are on the ballot. With Democrats trailing in the polls, there don't appear to be any hotly contested races.


From The Texas Tribune:

Republican Greg Abbott has a 16-point lead over Democrat Wendy Davis in the closing days of this year’s general election for governor, according to the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll.

Abbott has the support of 54 percent of likely voters to Davis’ 38 percent. Libertarian Kathie Glass has the support of 6 percent, and the Green Party’s Brandon Parmer got 2 percent.

“The drama of the outcome is not who wins, but what the margin will be,” said Jim Henson, co-director of the poll and head of the Texas Politics Project at the University of Texas at Austin. “Wendy Davis has not led in a single poll in this race.”

Among men, Abbott holds a 61-32 lead in this survey. And he leads by 2 percentage points — 48 to 46 — among women.

Early voting for the November election starts today. And to arm you with information before you head to the polls, KUT's Nathan Bernier and political reporter Ben Philpott have been highlighting the candidates in a few key state-wide races, and letting you know just what the offices they're running for can and can't do.

Nathan: So, I guess we've saved the best for last: let's talk about the governor's race and have a quick rundown of the governor's powers, as well.

Ben: The Texas governor is traditionally considered to be a weak office. And there's a reason for that. When Texans were writing up their constitution after the civil war, the LBJ school's Sherri Greenberg says they were eager to limit any and all powers of any so-called carpetbaggers from reconstruction.

"So when Texans wrote the Texas constitution, this very populist document, with as much power as possible vested in the people and at the lowest, most local, level of government," Greenberg said.

Of course, it wasn't just Texas. Decentralizing government power was a broader trend across the country in the 1800’s. And that action in Texas left us with what's considered a weak governor.

Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s lawyers were back in court today, without their client. When the scheduling hearing was over, the judge set a pretrial hearing for Friday, Oct. 31.

One issue to be discussed is whether Special Prosecutor Michael McCrum was properly sworn in, which will determine whether he’s qualified to continue as attorney pro tem, in the place of District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg.

The state’s highest criminal appeals court is refusing to reinstate the 2010 convictions of former House Majority Leader Tom Delay on money laundering and conspiracy charges.

Prosecutors alleged Delay illegally funneled $190,000 in corporate campaign contributions to several candidates for the Texas Legislature in 2002.

The Republican Party of Texas was once the unwinnable team. Democrats were the party of the south and Texas reflected that election after election. So in 1978 when Bill Clements became the first republican Governor in over 100 years it was a surprise.

State democrats may have assuaged their fears with the knowledge that it was a off-election year and voter turnout was low, and--after all--it was only one office.

State Sen. Wendy Davis’ memoir comes out today, though the Democratic gubernatorial candidate’s book has already caused some controversy. In it, she shares the stories of two abortions she had for medical reasons.

Republican Attorney General Greg Abbott’s campaign, however, is focusing on another issue – whether she can promote her book and still abide by Texas campaign finance laws. Abbott’s campaign asked the state’s campaign finance regulator to weigh in Monday.

Wendy Davis, the Democratic candidate for governor, said Wednesday she wants to eliminate the statute of limitations for prosecuting cases of rape and sex assault.

Gov. Rick Perry, who has been using taxpayer dollars to pay his defense lawyers, will tap campaign funds from now on to compensate the attorneys who are fighting his felony indictments, his spokesman said Wednesday night.

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