Government & Public Policy

News about politics and government.

Ryan Poppe / Texas Public Radio

In his second State-of-the-State speech today, Gov. Greg Abbott called for four emergency items, a move that will allow state lawmakers to vote on those measures without waiting until they are at least 60 days into the session.  

Abbott called for reforming Child Protective Services, banning sanctuary cities, implementing meaningful ethics reforms and passing a resolution calling for a Convention of States.

Child Protective Services

Aaron Schrank / Texas Public Radio

Hundreds attended ‘Muslim Capitol Day’ in Austin on Tuesday. The regular event encourages Muslim Texans to meet with their state representatives. Today’s Muslim Day event was scheduled months ago, but takes on new meaning following Friday’s executive order by President Donald Trump restricting U.S. immigration from seven majority-Muslim countries.

More than a thousand people flooded the south steps of the Capitol for the event organized by The Council on Islamic Relations, or CAIR. CAIR San Antonio President Sarwat Husain says it’s been her duty to come here every other year and make her voice heard.

"Lately we have seen some demonstrations against us," Husain says. "That is not going to stop us at all. We are Americans."

Two years ago, the Muslim Day rally was interrupted by protesters. Today, hundreds of non-Muslims formed a human chain to keep any protesters away from participants. Rashad Sharaf was one of at least 30 Muslims who came to Tuesday’s event from San Antonio. He says the display made him feel proud to be an American.

"After the elections, I was slowly beginning to lose faith, but now, really, when I see--around the country--how people have spontaneously risen to protest. And what I see in San Antonio, what I see over here, it really is heartwarming," Sharaf says.


He and others visited the offices of several state lawmakers--including House Speaker Joe Strauss. The group brought up issues including immigrant rights, bullying and police body cameras. Muslim groups also came from Houston and Dallas.

Shelley Kofler / Texas Public Radio

On Sunday a crowd of 250 spontaneously turned out at downtown’s Main Plaza to protest President Donald Trump’s executive orders.  The orders ban refugees and foreign nationals from some Muslim countries from entering the United States.

Ryan E. Poppe

State officials have detected Chronic Wasting Disease in Texas’ WILD white deer population.  It’s a scenario that Texas Parks and Wildlife has feared since the disease first emerged at a deer breeding ranch in Medina County.

State Rep. Kyle Biedermann's Office

Some Republicans in the Texas legislature are planning to draft legislation aimed at  monitoring Muslims in Texas.  The meeting followed a controversial survey sent to several Islamic groups.

The Homeland Security – Defending Against Radical Islam forum was an unofficial meeting led by State Rep. Kyle Biedermann, a freshman Republican from Fredericksburg.