Columns/Opinions

Wed
15
Apr

Senate approves Public Integrity Unit bill

By Ed Sterling

Statewide authority to investigate and prosecute public corruption would be moved out of the Travis County District Attorney’s Office under Senate Bill 10, legislation approved by the Senate on April 9. Sen. Joan Huffman, chair of the Senate State Affairs Committee, wrote the legislation under which the Texas Rangers, a division of the Department of Public Safety, would reestablish and support the state’s Public Integrity Unit and assume the initial investigatory role when a complaint is filed against a public official. Cases would be prosecuted in the county where a public official resides.

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Wed
15
Apr

Congress, President need to consult

by Lee Hamilton

Congress feels left out of foreign policy-making. I have considerable sympathy for this impulse. Over the decades, too much power has drifted to the President when it comes to foreign affairs. The Congress has been deferential, even timid, in allowing this to happen. Moreover, the administration has not done an especially good job of consulting with Congress. The President is the chief actor in foreign policy, and it’s his obligation to reach out and develop a sustained dialogue with Congress on foreign policy matters. As far as I can tell, he has not done that sufficiently.

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Wed
08
Apr

Freedoms come with responsiblity

With any kind of freedom comes responsibility. Responsibility walks hand in hand with capacity and power. And with great power comes great responsibility.
 

 

Wed
08
Apr

‘Ragtime King’ left unique musical legacy

When Scott Joplin died in a New York City asylum on April 1, 1917, the “King of Ragtime” was out of money and out of his mind. Florence Joplin, a freeborn black woman from Kentucky, gave birth to the second of her six children in late 1867 or early 1868 near Linden in northeastern Texas.
 
Wed
01
Apr

House, Senate continue with adopting budget

By Ed Sterling
 
AUSTIN — The House Appropriations Committee on March 24 unanimously approved the General Appropriations Act (House Bill 1) — the first hurdle toward passing a state budget for fiscal years 2016 and 2017.
 

 

Wed
01
Apr

Holding government accountable

By Kelley Shannon
 
Private university police beat a man suspected of stealing a bicycle. The violent episode was captured on a dash camera, but when questions arose, the police refused to release the complete video. City officials used their personal email accounts to discuss government business, just as Hillary Clinton did as secretary of state.
 

 

Wed
25
Mar

Town goes up in flames twice in four decades

By Bartee Haile

 

Ninety-nine years ago this week, the second major fire in four decades destroyed downtown Paris leaving 5,000 residents of the northeast Texas town homeless. Founded in 1844 on 50 acres donated by a pioneer merchant, the original inhabitants changed the name of the settlement from Pinhook to Paris. On the eve of secession, the community was a cattle and farming center of 700, a figure that more than tripled by 1877.
 
Wed
25
Mar

House passes human border security, trafficking bills

By Ed Sterling

 

Bills to address the illegal importation and exploitation of persons and to protect the state’s border with Mexico moved through the Texas House last week. They were the first major statewide legislation to be approved by the body since Jan. 13, the opening day of the 140-day session.
 
Wed
18
Mar

Lawmakers seek to control elements of state spending

By Ed Sterling
 
Debates over the Texas House and Senate versions of the state budget lie ahead, and movement toward setting budget controls to blend into a final, agreed-upon budget for 2016-2017 emerged in low-numbered bills filed last week.

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Wed
18
Mar

Vote against amnesty plan

By Roger Williams
 
Our president has bullied, disrespected and taunted a Congress that is by law an equal to his executive branch. When it was time to take this vote, I could not fold my hand to a president who thinks the Constitution does not apply to him. I could not give in to a president who prefers to create law rather than enforce it – not to mention, refuse to enforce law that directly affects my district and Texas.

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