The Week in the Rearview Mirror

Voters approved eight constitutional amendments in addition to creating the $2 billion water fund, and passed them easily. It was a rough election for football in the Houston area, where voters said no to one bond package that would have converted the abandoned Astrodome into a convention facility and another that would have built a new $69.5 million stadium for Katy ISD.

The election was the first test of the state’s new voter ID law, which requires voters to show a photo ID to cast their ballots, and though elections officials say the process went smoothly, some worry that could change in future elections with increased voter turnout.

President Barack Obama visited Dallas this week, calling on Gov. Rick Perry to expand Medicaid under the federal Affordable Care Act. He emphasized that other states that chose to expand Medicaid have seen their rates of the uninsured decrease, such as Arkansas, where it dropped by 14 percent. Texas would have had to spend $15 billion to expand Medicaid over the next 10 years — spending that would've assured up to $100 billion in federal funds. Instead, the state Legislature approved a measure prohibiting the Health and Human Services Commission from even considering Medicaid expansion without its approval. The governor called the president's visit "a desperate attempt to salvage his ill-conceived and unpopular program from a Titanic fate."

State Sen. Wendy Davis now has a book deal. The New York Times reported that the presumptive Democratic nominee for governor will pen a memoir due to hit bookstores in the fall of 2014, just in time for the hottest part of the general election season.

As congestion worsens on Interstate 35 through Austin, state leaders are seriously discussing a drastic response: tolling the highway's lanes in the city and making part of the nearby State Highway 130 toll road free. A segment of Interstate 35 that runs through central Austin is the most congested stretch of road in the state, according to the Texas Department of Transportation.

An email released this week revealed that in early 2013, University of Texas System Regent Wallace Hall, on a call with the agent for University of Alabama coach Nick Saban, said UT-Austin President Bill Powers would be gone by year's endHall has been accused by lawmakers of being on a "witch hunt" to oust Powers, and the regent is currently being investigated by a legislative committee with the power to recommend articles of impeachment against him.