Following principle rather than politics would require crossing Texas GOP voters who are overwhelmingly and uncompromisingly supportive of the wall, comfortable with Trump’s reliance on executive power to deliver it and still intensely supportive of his presidency.
Twenty-four years ago, my 16-year-old son made a terrible mistake. Since then, he has been serving a life sentence in Texas prison for capital murder.
Let the men and women we elect to administer justice decide how best to administer it. Don’t tie their hands by outsourcing that decision to an algorithm. And don’t ask them to make pretrial release decisions blindfolded, without the full picture of a criminal defendant’s background, as is the case currently.
The criminalization of poverty is not limited to the broken and unconstitutional cash bail system in our state. It also includes subjecting poor, low-income and working-class Texans to criminal prosecution for failing to timely repay unconscionable payday loans.
Recently, state officials announced that a number of individuals voted in elections without the requisite citizenship, knowing the data was not yet reviewed or vetted. There is not a problem of non-citizens registering and voting in Texas — there is a data problem. Even worse, government officials purposely took advantage of that known data problem to plant doubt about the integrity of the voting system.
When state leaders take action that responds directly to the requests of their constituents, it is time to stop everything, shout thank you and offer a sustained round of applause.
Money really does matter in public education, and it is a message we are seeing carried by a wide range of voices — from philanthropy to business, policy experts to child advocates, parents to locally elected officials. It is an investment the state can and must make if we are to achieve the education and workforce goals established by the state’s 60x30 TX plan.
Successful clean energy efforts in Texas have largely been and will continue to be the result of strong conservative Republican leadership. In 1999, while still Governor of Texas, George W. Bush signed legislation that deregulated the state’s power market and set the state on a path to becoming a leader in generating electricity from carbon-free electricity. That policy has now become a national model and roadmap for economic success.
Excluding school librarians from the pay raise bill is extremely unfair and ignores their true role — not just as classroom teachers, but as campus teachers. It will discourage our best educators from entering this crucial field, inhibiting student achievement in the future.
We are privileged to live in a state with growth opportunities on all fronts. Simply meeting today’s demand for a career-ready workforce will not be enough to sustain our economic advantage. It is more important than ever to prepare college students to become highly skilled professionals who can lead Texas into a future of even more significant impact.
The Legislature should increase state contributions to the TRS Pension Trust Fund to 8.6 percent from 6.8 percent. This would increase the base funding and open the door for retirees (95 percent of whom have no Social Security) to receive a desperately needed cost-of-living increase.
Texas has a tremendous opportunity to begin to meaningfully transform the prospects of the 3.1 million low-income and English-learning students in Texas.