Two Michigan prosecutors say they’ll enforce 1931 abortion ban despite injunction
“If a case is brought in front of our clients, at least, they’ve indicated to us and the media that they’ll look at it,” said David Kallman, a lawyer with the conservative Great Lakes Justice Center. “And if the facts are there, they’ll charge, because the law is the law and it’s in effect.”washingtonpost.com
Texas is unlikely to adopt key provision of bipartisan federal gun bill – Houston Public Media
Red flag laws likely remain a nonstarter among Republican leaders in Texas, where Gov. Greg Abbott already faced a conservative backlash after he asked the Legislature to consider them four years ago.houstonpublicmedia.org
Texas is unlikely to adopt key provision of bipartisan gun bill — a red flag law to take guns away from people deemed dangerous
Red flag laws likely remain a nonstarter among Republican leaders in Texas, where Gov. Greg Abbott already faced a conservative backlash after he asked the Legislature to consider them four years ago.
Texas House speaker pitches spending more than $100 million for mental health, school safety programs
Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan pitched redirecting more than $100 million in state funding to quickly boost mental health and school safety programs before school starts again next fall.His plan came[San Marcos, TX] [Hays County news] News San Marcos News, San Marcos Record [Texas State]sanmarcosrecord.com
Texas House speaker pitches spending more than $100 million for mental health, school safety programs
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick had asked House leaders to support his push for arming school police officers with bulletproof shields after the Uvalde shooting. House Speaker Dade Phelan is also asking for more money for mental health and school safety programs.
Mixed results as South Dakota's Noem intervenes in GOP races
Ahead of a potential presidential bid, South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem handily won the Republican nomination last week for a second term. It's a lesson that Donald Trump, Noem's ally, is learning as he falls short, notably in Georgia, in trying to punish Republicans who have crossed him. In the GOP primary last month, Georgia voters overwhelmingly backed Gov. Brian Kemp, who had rebuffed Trump's lies about widespread fraud during the 2020 election.news.yahoo.com
Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger testifies in Trump election probe
Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger is among several top state officials testifying before a grand jury regarding whether former President Donald Trump illegally tried to overturn Georgia's 2020 election results. Tia Mitchell, Washington correspondent for the Atlanta Journal Constitution, explains the significance of his testimony.news.yahoo.com
Indiana court strikes down emergency law fought by governor
The Indiana Supreme Court on Friday threw out a law that gave state legislators increased power to intervene during public health emergencies, agreeing with arguments from Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb that the move violated the state constitution. The court’s unanimous decision settles a legal fight that began more than a year ago when Holcomb sued over a law that was a response to his efforts to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. The new law gave legislative leaders authority to call the General Assembly into an “emergency session” if the governor declares a statewide emergency.news.yahoo.com
Confronted with mass shootings, Texas Republicans have repeatedly loosened gun laws
Gov. Greg Abbott and other Republican leaders signaled an openness to some gun restrictions after recent mass shootings. But in the last several years, lawmakers have eased gun laws, most notably by passing a permitless carry bill last year.
Resigning North Dakota senator led lawmakers in travel costs
A North Dakota state senator who is resigning following a report about text messages he exchanged with an inmate ran up travel expenses the past decade that are more than 14 times what lawmakers bill state taxpayers on average, according to a review by The Associated Press. Republican Ray Holmberg, the Legislature's longest-serving senator, has made taxpayer-funded trips to four dozen U.S. cities, China, Canada and several countries in Europe, the AP's review of travel records showed. The 229 lawmakers who served during that period accounted for more than $2 million in travel, or about $8,700 per lawmaker — putting Holmberg’s total many times above the average as he went everywhere from Norway to New Orleans and Portland, Oregon, to Puerto Rico.news.yahoo.com
Police: Cartels in Oregon are morphing their pot-growing ops
Foreign drug cartels that established illegal outdoor marijuana farms in Oregon last year are adapting as pressure on them begins to mount, law enforcement officials said Thursday. New challenges are emerging as a task force created by the Legislature met for the first time to figure out how to combat cannabis-related problems, some of which threaten Oregon's legal, regulated recreational marijuana industry. The Task Force on Cannabis-Derived Intoxicants and Illegal Cannabis Production is also responsible for recommending funding and command structure to enable law enforcement to combat illegal cannabis production, changes to state laws to address labor trafficking and water theft by the cartel-financed pot farms and regulations on genetic engineering of cannabis, among other issues.news.yahoo.com
Capital Highlights — Voters back property tax amendments
Texas voters overwhelmingly approved two proposed amendments on Saturday that will provide property tax relief to homeowners.According to the Austin American-Statesman, nearly 85% of voters supported [San Marcos, TX] [Hays County news] News San Marcos News, San Marcos Record [Texas State]sanmarcosrecord.com
Analysis: Every so often, Texas government needs a reboot
Performance reviews of state government are an exercise in separating the operation of government — how things work — from the direction of government — what, in broader terms, government should do. The nuts and bolts on one hand, the vision thing on the other.
Arizona Supreme Court reinstates massive income tax cuts
The Arizona Supreme Court on Thursday ruled that the state's voters do not have the right to reject a massive income tax cut approved by the Republican-controlled Legislature and Gov. Doug Ducey last year. The decision means a tax cut is in effect that will hit nearly $2 billion when it is fully in place and mainly benefits the wealthy. Lawyers for the Arizona Free Enterprise Club, a conservative pro-business group that pushes for lower taxes and regulations, argued the state constitution does not allow referrals for measures that provide for the “support and maintenance” of state government and that the tax cut bill falls into that category.news.yahoo.com
ND lawmaker quits panel leadership after texts with inmate
North Dakota's longest-serving state senator resigned Wednesday as head of a powerful panel that oversees the Legislature's business between sessions, just days after a published report that he had exchanged scores of text messages with a man jailed on child pornography charges. Republican Sen. Ray Holmberg, 79, stepped down from the Legislative Management committee, saying in a statement “recent events and discussions have made it clear to me that the interim governing body of the legislature, Legislative Management, does not need to be any part of that discussion.” Holmberg will remain on the panel, but not as its chairman.news.yahoo.com
Wisconsin governor vetoes Republican election bills
Wisconsin's Democratic Gov. Tony Evers, who is up for reelection in November, on Friday vetoed a package of bills passed by the Republican-controlled Legislature that would have made a series of changes to the battleground state's election laws. The bills are part of a nationwide Republican effort to reshape elections following President Joe Biden’s victory over Donald Trump. The bills were quickly passed earlier this year amid Trump's insistence that the 2020 election was stolen from him and that there was widespread fraud, despite no evidence to back up his claims.news.yahoo.com
Florida Gov. DeSantis vetoes new congressional maps
In a rare disagreement with the Republican-dominated Legislature, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis vetoed the state's newly drawn congressional maps Tuesday, and lawmakers will hold a special session in April to redraw them. The veto puts more pressure on the Republican-dominated Legislature to approve a map and resolve any resulting lawsuits before the June 13 to 17 qualifying period for federal candidates. Florida is also creating a new 28th district because of population growth.news.yahoo.com
Fighting care for transgender kids shifts from a fringe issue to a litmus test for Texas Republicans
The issue is no longer contained to just the party’s fringes — and it is unlikely to go away any time soon as the national fervor grows, Gov. Greg Abbott’s directive faces legal challenges and it factors prominently into a slew of GOP primary runoffs.
State senator scrutinized after photos of female aide found
A Nebraska state senator called for a criminal investigation after one of her colleagues said he would resign after admitting that he took photos of a female legislative aide without her knowledge. Democratic state Sen. Megan Hunt of Omaha sent a letter urging the state attorney general and Nebraska State Patrol to investigate the conduct of Republican Sen. Mike Groene to determine if he committed any crimes, according to the Omaha World-Herald. Groene told The Associated Press Friday that he planned to resign this week to avoid putting his family through a public ordeal.news.yahoo.com
Capital Highlights — Mail-in ballot applications rejected at high rate
Mail-in ballot applications for the March 1 primary are being rejected by almost 40% — largely because of a missing ID number, which is now required after a new voting bill passed the Legislature last[San Marcos, TX] [Hays County news] News San Marcos News, San Marcos Record [Texas State]sanmarcosrecord.com
Costs climb again for California's high-speed rail project
The cost to build California's ambitious but long delayed high-speed rail line has once again risen, with rail officials now estimating it could take up to $105 billion to finish the line from San Francisco to Los Angeles. The new cost estimates, released Tuesday as part of the California High Speed Rail Authority's biennial business plan, are up roughly $5 billion from two years ago.news.yahoo.com
Federal judges won’t halt Texas primary in state Senate district being challenged for alleged discrimination
The redrawn state Senate District 10 splits Black and Hispanic voters in Tarrant County. A full trial on whether GOP lawmakers intentionally discriminated against voters of color is expected later this year.
California eyes giving 500,000 fast food workers more power
California's more than half-million fast food workers would get increased power and protections under a first-in-the-nation measure approved by the state Assembly on Monday. It would be limited to fast food restaurants with at least 30 establishments nationally. “California has a chance to lead the country and address outstanding issues in the fast food industry," said Democratic Assemblyman Chris Holden, a former franchisee himself.news.yahoo.com
Texas violated voting rights law during redistricting, retiring state GOP senator says in sworn court statement
A three-judge federal panel is hearing arguments in a lawsuit claiming that Texas Republicans violated the Voting Rights Act when they redrew state Senate District 10 in Tarrant County to lessen Black and Hispanic voting power.
Wisconsin GOP leader: 'Zero chance' of taking over elections
A top Republican lawmaker in the presidential battleground state of Wisconsin said Friday that there is “zero chance” the GOP-controlled Legislature will take over the awarding of the state's 10 presidential elector votes in 2024, even as Democrats worry that is their goal. Assembly Speaker Robin Vos told The Associated Press in an interview that he also opposes dissolving the bipartisan Wisconsin Elections Commission, which oversees elections, or making wholesale changes to how it operates. There has been an intense focus on Wisconsin and its election laws since President Joe Biden defeated Donald Trump by nearly 21,000 votes last year.news.yahoo.com
June primary election hovers over Illinois legislative session as lawmakers try to finish budget and other work by April
Illinois lawmakers are on a fast-track schedule in an election-year session as they attempt to pass a budget and complete other tasks against an early April adjournment date.chicagotribune.com
The Best Things in Texas 2022: Heroes of the Deep Freeze and Blackout
Last February’s deep freeze and the blackout that followed were brutal. But without the selfless actions of countless Texans, the situation could have been much worse. Cold weather, warm hearts, can help: Without the selfless actions of countless Texans, the 2021 winter storm could have been much worse.texasmonthly.com
A growing number of Texas Republicans want a fourth special session to pass COVID-19 vaccine mandate ban
It remains unclear whether Gov. Greg Abbott — the only official with the power to convene special sessions — will order state lawmakers back to Austin, or what issues he would include on the agenda.
South Dakota Supreme Court rules against pot legalization
The South Dakota Supreme Court on Wednesday upheld a lower court's ruling that nullified a voter-passed amendment to the state constitution that would have legalized recreational marijuana use. Gov. Kristi Noem instigated the legal fight to strike down the amendment passed by voters in November. The high court sided with those arguments in a 4-1 decision, ruling that the measure — Amendment A — would have violated the state’s requirement that constitutional amendments deal with just one subject.news.yahoo.com
Wisconsin audit finds elections are 'safe and secure'
A highly anticipated nonpartisan audit of the 2020 presidential election in Wisconsin did not identify any widespread fraud in the battleground state, which a key Republican legislative leader says shows that the state's elections are “safe and secure.”.
Republicans say Texas’ new political maps are “race blind.” To some voters of color, that translates as political invisibility.
With partisan fervor, Republicans drew new maps for Congress and the Legislature that dilute the power of voters of color. Now the lawsuits begin, as groups that feel marginalized battle for representation in the halls of power.
Texas colleges and universities get more than $3 billion for campus construction projects under bill headed to Gov. Greg Abbott
Before ending the special session Tuesday, Texas lawmakers reached a deal to allocate roughly $3.3 billion to higher education institutions for capital projects. The price tag went up from the Senate's original proposal.
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick asks Gov. Greg Abbott to add higher ed construction projects to third special session
The Texas Legislature has not approved bonds to fund capital projects on public university campuses since 2015, and many school leaders say they need help to build new buildings and maintain current structures.