Tribpedia: The Brief

We’re merged the convenience of the email blast and the need-to-know nature of the Brief into a single daily missive, delivered from newsletters editor John Reynolds’ fingertips directly to your inbox first thing every morning.

The Brief will still show up on our website — once a day, early in the morning. But if you’re the type who reaches for your ...

The Brief: Bathroom restrictions pass House during busy weekend

Bathroom stalls at the Austin Convention Center.
<p>Bathroom stalls at the Austin Convention Center.</p>

With one week of the Texas Legislature's 2017 regular session remaining, the House kicked into high gear over the weekend to pass several key items — including a version of the "bathroom bill" after facing pressure from Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick. Legislators also unveiled a deal to finalize the state's 2018-19 budget, and the Senate approved a school finance bill.

Former FBI Director James Comey (l.) was fired by President Trump on May 9, 2017.
<p>Former FBI Director James Comey (l.) was fired by President Trump on May 9, 2017.</p>

The Brief: What Texans in Congress are saying about latest Trump reports

A series of political revelations about President Donald Trump and recently ousted FBI Director James Comey faced lawmakers as they returned to the U.S. Capitol. Here's what some members of the Texas delegation have said so far. 

A handful of tourists hang around outside the Texas Capitol on May 11, 2017 as the House faces a midnight deadline that will ultimately end in the death of scores of bills in the 85th legislature.&nbsp;
<p>A handful of tourists hang around outside the Texas Capitol on May 11, 2017 as the House faces a midnight deadline that will ultimately end in the death of scores of bills in the 85th legislature.&nbsp;</p>

The Brief: Three issues to watch today as key deadlines loom

Lawmakers in the House have one week to tentatively pass Senate Bills out of the lower chamber. Time is running out for the 85th Texas legislative session. There are a few key issues we're watching today — here's what to look out for.

Longtime State Rep. Senfronia Thompson, D-Houston, appears exasperated by Liberty Caucus attempts to disrupt normal House business by challenges to the Local and Consent calendar during the session May 11, 2017. &nbsp;Thompson is the chairman of the committee.&nbsp;
<p>Longtime State Rep. Senfronia Thompson, D-Houston, appears exasperated by Liberty Caucus attempts to disrupt normal House business by challenges to the Local and Consent calendar during the session May 11, 2017. &nbsp;Thompson is the chairman of the committee.&nbsp;</p>

The Brief: Get ready for a legislative bloodbath in the Texas House

As the Texas House rounded the corner and raced toward a key deadline Thursday night, conservative House lawmakers announced they were killing more than 100 bills.

House Speaker Joe Straus gavels the vote on an amendment to HB 100 on April 19, 2017. The bill is being debated with several amendments that would regulate ride-hailing services with uniform regulations statewide.&nbsp;
<p>House Speaker Joe Straus gavels the vote on an amendment to HB 100 on April 19, 2017. The bill is being debated with several amendments that would regulate ride-hailing services with uniform regulations statewide.&nbsp;</p>

The Brief: It's doomsday for a lot of House bills today

It's countdown time. Thursday is the last day that House-originated legislation can receive tentative approval in the lower chamber. Here's what you need to know.

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick signs bills on last day of 84th Legislative session June 1, 2015
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick signs bills on last day of 84th Legislative session June 1, 2015

The Brief: It's bill-killing season at the Texas Capitol

The 140-day clock at the Texas Capitol seems to be ticking faster than ever, and bills are dying inside both chambers. Bill-killing deadlines may stop a bill from being heard on the House or Senate floor this session, but that doesn't necessarily mean the issue is dead.

Protesters turn out at the Capitol in Austin hours after Gov. Greg Abbott signs Senate Bill 4 &nbsp;&mdash; the "sanctuary cities" bill &mdash; into law. Abbott livestreamed the signing of the bill on Facebook.
<p>Protesters turn out at the Capitol in Austin hours after Gov. Greg Abbott signs Senate Bill 4 &nbsp;&mdash; the "sanctuary cities" bill &mdash; into law. Abbott livestreamed the signing of the bill on Facebook.</p>

The Brief: Gov. Greg Abbott signed a ban on "sanctuary cities" into law this weekend

With the legislative session drawing its curtains at the Texas Capitol in a few short weeks, the House worked into the night Friday and most of Saturday. Meanwhile, Gov. Greg Abbott signed a controversial bill into law late Sunday.

After only a short debate, the Texas House voted on May 4, 2017, to pass a resolution calling for a Convention of States. Rep. Rick Miller, R-Sugar Land, who carried the proposal in the House, debates Rep. Chris Turner, D-Arlington, on the issue.
<p>After only a short debate, the Texas House voted on May 4, 2017, to pass a resolution calling for a Convention of States. Rep. Rick Miller, R-Sugar Land, who carried the proposal in the House, debates Rep. Chris Turner, D-Arlington, on the issue.</p>

The Brief: "BOOM," says Abbott, after Texas House passes call for convention of states

The Texas House on Thursday passed a call for a convention of states to amend the U.S. Constitution, pushing one of Gov. Greg Abbott's four emergency items this session a step further in the legislative process. 

Austin City Council member&nbsp;Gregorio Casar speaks to opponents of the&nbsp;"sanctuary" jurisdictions bill moving through the Legislature outside the State Insurance Building in Austin on May 1, 2017.
<p>Austin City Council member&nbsp;Gregorio Casar speaks to opponents of the&nbsp;<span>"sanctuary" jurisdictions bill moving through the Legislature outside the State Insurance Building in Austin on May 1, 2017.</span></p>

The Brief: Two dozen arrested at Texas Capitol

At least two dozen protestors on the grounds of the Texas Capitol were charged with trespassing Monday after a day-long sit-in over a proposed bill that would ban "sanctuary" jurisdictions in Texas.

Rep. Rafael Anchia, D-Dallas, speaks to Rep. Victoria Neave, D-Dallas, at the back mic in the Texas House during the debate on a bill that would ban "sanctuary" policies in Texas.
<p>Rep. Rafael Anchia, D-Dallas, speaks to Rep. Victoria Neave, D-Dallas, at the back mic in the Texas House during the debate on a bill that would ban "sanctuary" policies in Texas.</p>

The Brief: The "sanctuary" bill is closer to Abbott's desk

After a marathon debate that went into the early hours of the morning on a bill that would ban “sanctuary” policies in Texas, the Texas House officially approved the measure along a party-line vote Thursday afternoon.

State Rep. Veronica Neave, D-Dallas, gives an emotional speech as a picture of her father is held up during the debate on SB4 &mdash; the "sanctuary cities" bill &mdash; on April 26, 2017. &nbsp;
<p>State Rep. Veronica Neave, D-Dallas, gives an emotional speech as a picture of her father is held up during the debate on SB4 &mdash; the "sanctuary cities" bill &mdash; on April 26, 2017. &nbsp;</p>

The Brief: While you slept, the Texas House tentatively passed a sanctuary cities ban

After more than 16 hours of emotional debate — which left some lawmakers in tears — the Texas House tentatively passed a controversial bill that would ban "sanctuary" policies in Texas.

A coalition of immigrant rights groups protest SB 4 at the East steps of the Texas Capitol prior to a committee hearing on the sanctuary cities bill on March 15, 2017.
A coalition of immigrant rights groups protest SB 4 at the East steps of the Texas Capitol prior to a committee hearing on the sanctuary cities bill on March 15, 2017.

The Brief: Battle lines drawn for "sanctuary" debate in Texas House

The Texas House is expected to take up a contentious bill Wednesday that would ban "sanctuary" policies across the state. Some lawmakers anticipate "trench warfare."

U.S. Rep. Beto O&rsquo;Rourke announced his bid to run for U.S. Senate while speaking to supporters in El Paso&nbsp;on March 31, 2017.&nbsp;
<p><span>U.S. Rep. Beto O&rsquo;Rourke announced his bid to run for U.S. Senate while speaking to supporters in El Paso&nbsp;on March 31, 2017.&nbsp;</span></p>

The Brief: Beto O'Rourke explains exceptions on consultants

After U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke declared that his campaign would not hire consultants when he launched his U.S. Senate bid, a recently filed campaign finance report showed he used two consulting firms leading up to his campaign's kickoff.

State Rep. Dan Huberty, chairman of the House Public Education Committee, waits to lay out HB 21 school finance legislation in the Texas House on April 19, 2017.&nbsp;
<p>State Rep. Dan Huberty, chairman of the House Public Education Committee, waits to lay out HB 21 school finance legislation in the Texas House on April 19, 2017.&nbsp;</p>

The Brief: Here's what happened at the Texas Capitol while you slept

House Lawmakers debated some contentious legislation Wednesday, including measures on ride-hailing, bathrooms and school finance. Here's what you missed while you slept.

John Erler of Austin poses as Moses in the hallways of the Capitol Extension during public testimony on SB 6 the bathroom bill on March 7, 2017.
John Erler of Austin poses as Moses in the hallways of the Capitol Extension during public testimony on SB 6 the bathroom bill on March 7, 2017.

The Brief: Greg Abbott signaled support for a bathroom bill. Now what?

Things at the Texas Capitol are beginning to boil with six weeks left in the legislative session. Multiple proposals are bubbling inside the House today, which convenes at 10 a.m.

House Appropriations Committee chairman John Zerwas lays out the budget with an abacus as a prop. The plaque reads, "Sometimes All You Need Is A Billion Dollars."
<p>House Appropriations Committee chairman John Zerwas lays out the budget with an abacus as a prop. The plaque reads, "Sometimes All You Need Is A Billion Dollars."</p>

The Brief: The House and Senate clash over cash

The House and Senate budgets have both allocated about $218 billion for the state. But crucial differences remain on how much each proposal funds important resources.

State Rep. Sarah Davis, R-West University Place, chairwoman of the&nbsp;Committee on General Investigating and Ethics,&nbsp;holds up a TABC flyer at a hearing on April 13, 2017.
<p>State Rep. Sarah Davis, R-<span>West University Place</span>, chairwoman of the&nbsp;<span>Committee on General Investigating and Ethics,&nbsp;</span>holds up a TABC flyer at a hearing on April 13, 2017.</p>

The Brief: TABC's terrible, horrible, no good, very bad hearing

The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission's spending controversies landed them in the hot seat with Texas lawmakers on Thursday. The House Committee on General Investigating and Ethics grilled top officials from TABC for more than three hours

Gov. Greg Abbott greets WWII veterans Gene Myers (Navy) and Eugene McClarq (Air Force) at the Capitol Veterans Day ceremony on Nov. 11, 2015.
Gov. Greg Abbott greets WWII veterans Gene Myers (Navy) and Eugene McClarq (Air Force) at the Capitol Veterans Day ceremony on Nov. 11, 2015.

The Brief: The battle over veterans' tuition

For years, Texas universities have raised alarms about the increasingly high cost of a state program called Hazlewood, which offers free college tuition to veterans' kids. This session, lawmakers are poised to scale the program back