Todd Wiseman

The Brief: Dec. 15, 2014

The Houston Chronicle's Theodore Schleifer has the goods on next year's mayoral election in Houston.

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Campaign Promotes Merry Christmas Law

Texas Values, a faith-based political advocacy organization, wants Texans to know about a new law that protects their freedom to express holiday cheer. Critics say that freedom was never in jeopardy.

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"Merry Christmas Bill" Heads to Governor

The Senate passed a House bill that would allow teachers and other public school staff to use holiday greetings like "Merry Christmas” and "Happy Hanukkah" and to display Christmas trees, menorahs and other cultural icons of winter celebrations. 

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Andhi J

Texas House Gives Smoking Ban Early OK

The Texas House tentatively approved a statewide ban on smoking in public places tonight, adding the measure onto another bill that must pass in order to make the two-year state budget balance.

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Bob Daemmrich

Tonight's the Night

Over the past year, we've seen nearly $100 million worth of gubernatorial politics in Texas and millions more spent maneuvering for advantage in Congress, in the Legislature and in other statewide and local offices. Tonight, we'll finally know what's what.

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Illustration by Todd Wiseman/Bob Daemmrich

The Great White Hope

Bill White, the Democratic nominee for governor, was a popular mayor of Houston who was twice returned to office by wide margins. So having him at the top of the ballot this November should help Houston-area Democrats win their races, right? "I can't think that it would do anything but help," says Democratic state Rep. Kristi Thibaut, who's in a tough contest for re-election against former Republican lawmaker Jim Murphy. But Harris County GOP Judge Ed Emmett insists White will have little impact on his own bid for re-election — and won't matter in legislative races either.

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Graphic by Ben Hasson

TribWeek: In Case You Missed It

Hu compares and contrasts the official schedules of four big-state governors (including Rick Perry) and picks the 21 Texas House races to watch, Ramshaw on a 19-year-old with an IQ of 47 sentenced to 100 years in prison, Stiles on Perry's regent-donors, Galbraith on a plan to curb the independence of the state's electricity grid, Thevenot on the turf war over mental health, Grissom on whether the Texas Youth Commission should be abolished, Aguilar on a crucial immigration-related case pending before the U.S. Supreme Court, Ramsey's interview with GOP provocateur Debra Medina and M. Smith on how changes to campaign finance law will affect judicial elections in Texas: The best of our best from August 23 to 27, 2010.

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Jacob Villanueva

The Amazing Races

Political eyes are already focused on November and the eleven congressional and legislative targets that everyone will be talking about.

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And They're Off!

It's time to harvest the political speculations of the last several months: Democrats and Republicans have until January 4 to put their names on the ballots, or not, in anticipation of the March 2 primaries.

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2010: Winners and Losers

Tom Schieffer's out, and for the sake of this piece, let's say Bill White is running for the Democratic nomination for governor. How's that work out for everybody?

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Jacob Villanueva

Fight Club

With 198 legislators on the ballot next year, there ought to be more fear in the air. But only a few are in obvious political trouble. Who's on the list, and what makes them vulnerable?

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