Vol 33, Issue 24 Print Issue

The Week in the Rearview Mirror

Dealing a blow to President Barack Obama’s executive immigration order, the U.S. Supreme Court has deadlocked on a lower court's decision to block the plan, which would've provided relief from deportation and work permits to millions of people.

In a major — and surprising — win for affirmative action supporters, the U.S. Supreme Court has upheld the University of Texas at Austin’s right to give a slight boost to black and Hispanic applicants.

The youngest Texans appear destined to make the state dramatically more diverse as the white share of population drops. More than two-thirds of Texans under age 19 are non-white, according to new census figures.

Nearly every Texas Democrat in the U.S. House contributed in their own way Wednesday to an effort that ground the chamber to a halt with the aim of forcing a vote on gun control legislation.

The uncertainty over where and when the Zika virus might spread has left Texas women and doctors with questions about how best to prepare for an outbreak — questions as personal as whether women should delay pregnancy.

Texas abortion providers say the percentage of women at their clinics opting for drug-induced abortions to terminate early pregnancies has climbed significantly since March — when the FDA updated its rules for the medication.

Nearly a dozen-and-a-half Texans have more cash in the bank than Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee.

Though they disagree on almost every policy issue, from education funding to abortion to immigration, Texas Republicans and Democrats seem to have common ground on a few things, according to their newly approved platforms.

As Trump crisscrossed the state fundraising and rallying supporters this week, Texas Democrats gathered to unite thousands of delegates behind their party’s presumptive nominee, Hillary Clinton, to help ensure Trump’s defeat. But some delegates aren’t quite ready to abandon Bernie Sanders.

Trump is also scrambling to build a fundraising network, with the presumptive Republican presidential nominee relying on a number of people in Texas who do not see eye-to-eye with him on many of his signature policy proposals.

Disclosure: The University of Texas has been a financial sponsor of The Texas Tribune. A complete list of Tribune donors and sponsors can be viewed here.

Political People and their Moves

Gov. Greg Abbott has appointed Phil Grant to serve as the judge for the 9th Judicial District Court in Montgomery County until the November election. Grant won the Republican primary runoff for the seat in late May and faces no major party opposition in the fall.

Abbott named six people to the Governor's Committee on People with Disabilities, which makes recommendations on disability programs and policies. He appointed Nancy Miloy Clemmer of Austin and Richard Martinez of San Antonio; and reappointed Aaron W. Bangor of Austin, Heather C. Griffith-Dhanjal of Fort Worth, Phoene “Faye” Kuo of Austin and Marco A. Treviño of Edinburg to serve on the committee through February 2018.

Abbott reappointed David Fleeger of Austin to the Texas Health Services Authority Board of Directors and named him presiding. The governor also appointed David “Dave” Allen of San Antonio, Paula Anthony-McMann of Tyler, Brandon Charles of Coppell, Mark S. Lane of Lampasas, Andrew Lombardo of Harlingen and Deborah “Debbie” Marino of San Antonio; and reappointed Frederick “Fred” Buckwold of Houston, Shannon Calhoun of Goliad, Matthew “Matt” Hamlin of Argyle, William “Bill” Phillips Jr. of San Antonio and Stephen “Steve” Yurco of Austin. All of the above were named to terms to expire June 15, 2017.

House Speaker Joe Straus appointed state Rep. Lyle Larson of San Antonio co-chairman of the State Water Implementation Fund for Texas Advisory Committee and state Rep. Dade Phelan of Beaumont to serve on the body. The committee oversees the implementation of House Bill 4, passed in 2013 to create a fund to distribute loans for water supply and conservation projects.

Jon McClellan, a longtime staffer for Ted Cruz, has joined the Austin consulting firm Public Blueprint as director of outreach, the firm announced Tuesday morning. McClellan has worked for Cruz since his 2012 bid for the U.S. Senate, most recently serving as regional political director for his presidential campaign.

The public radio project Texas Station Collaborative has hired Rachel Osier Lindley to serve as its statewide coordinating editor. Lindley was previously news director of WBHM in Birmingham, Ala. The collaborative, billed as “a first-of-its-kind public radio initiative created to expand and enhance news coverage of Texas,” will be housed at KERA in North Texas.

A Texan, Brad Parscale of San Antonio, was announced this week as the Donald Trump campaign’s digital director. He and his company, Giles-Parscale, have "served the Trump Organization in building its digital platform globally,” the campaign noted yesterday.