Alexa Ura | Texas Tribune

Shelby Knowles for The Texas Tribune

Amid threats of a special legislative session over the “bathroom bill,” the Texas House on Sunday took a last-minute vote and approved a proposal that would keep transgender students from using school bathrooms in line with their gender identity.

Bob Daemmrich for The Texas Tribune

With deadlines looming, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick on Wednesday threatened to push for a special session of the Legislature to pass a bill to regulate bathroom use for transgender Texans and legislation to set new thresholds for when cities and counties must get voter approval for their tax rates.

Shelby Knowles for The Texas Tribune

A proposal to gut cities and school districts’ trans-inclusive bathroom policies did not advance in the House ahead of a crucial deadline, nixing the measure's chances of getting a vote by the full chamber. But that doesn't mean that the issue itself is dead.

Bob Daemmrich for The Texas Tribune

Prayer is a staple of the Texas Capitol, where lawmakers begin each legislative day with an invocation and bowed heads.

But on Wednesday, about 50 faith leaders of various denominations lined the stairs outside the Texas House in protest. Their prayer was silent, but their message was clear: Don’t legislate against LGBT Texans in our name.

Graphic by Todd Wiseman

With the 2018 election cycle looming, a federal judge panel has set July 10 as the start date for a trial over the state’s House and congressional political maps.

In an order filed Monday, the three judges presiding over the case scheduled the five-day trial following a pair of rulings that found Texas lawmakers intentionally discriminated against minority voters in initially drawing each map in 2011.

Bob Daemmrich for The Texas Tribune

Amid concerns about rolling back local protections for vulnerable Texans and dire economic fallout, a panel of House lawmakers considered a measure into the early hours of Thursday morning that some are hoping will serve as an alternative approach to regulating bathroom use for transgender Texans.

Bob Daemmrich

Texas is on the hook for more than $600,000 in fees associated with its unsuccessful fight to defend the state’s ban on same-sex marriage.

Affirming a lower court ruling on the fees, the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals this week shot down Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s challenge to the award amount granted to two same-sex couples who had sued the state.

A three-judge panel of the 5th Circuit ruled that the district court "acted will within its broad discretion" in awarding those legal fees.

Shelby Knowles for The Texas Tribune

In the aftermath of one troubled study on the economic impact of a "bathroom bill" in Texas, San Antonio tourism officials are returning to the legislative debate with another dire financial outlook.

Shelby Knowles for The Texas Tribune

After largely avoiding discussions so far on proposals to regulate bathrooms, the Texas House will wade into the debate this week with a measure some are hoping will serve as an alternative to the Senate’s “bathroom bill.”

Setting aside the Senate’s proposal, the House State Affairs Committee on Wednesday will take up House Bill 2899, which will be revised during the hearing to ban municipalities and school districts from enacting or enforcing local policies that regulate bathroom use.

Tamir Kalifa

The Texas Senate on Tuesday gave initial approval to a measure allowing county clerks to recuse themselves from signing marriage licenses for same-sex couples because of religious objections.

Qiling Wang for Texas Tribune

Texas Republicans followed North Carolina’s lead earlier this year in unveiling their own “bathroom bill.” Since then, supporters have described the Texas bill as similar to the North Carolina law yet different in important ways.

Shelby Knowles for The Texas Tribune

As North Carolina lawmakers voted Thursday to revise that state's bathroom law, Texas Republicans pushing a similar measure said they are not backing away from their proposal.

Bob Daemmrich for The Texas Tribune

The Texas Senate on Tuesday tentatively signed off on the “bathroom bill” on a 21-10 vote with one Democrat — state Sen. Eddie Lucio Jr. of Brownsville  — voting in favor of the bill.

With the measure scheduled for a committee hearing Tuesday, Texas Republicans are expected to offer a new version of the controversial “bathroom bill” with two significant changes.

Bob Daemmrich for The Texas Tribune

After receiving a letter from Republican state Rep. Kyle Biedermann surveying their beliefs, mosque leaders and representatives of the Texas Muslim community made one request: Get to know us.

Tamir Kalifa

After pressure from Texas GOP leadership, the all-Republican Texas Supreme Court on Friday reversed course and agreed to take up a same-sex marriage case.

Marjorie Kamys Cotera

Ahead of Texas Muslim Capitol Day scheduled for later this month, freshman state Rep. Kyle Biedermann, R-Fredericksburg, sent a letter to mosque leaders and Muslim student associations across the state, asking them to fill out a poll about their beliefs.

Todd Wiseman / Texas Tribune

From The Texas Tribune: The members of the Texas Legislature may be elected to represent all corners of the state, but they’re not necessarily reflective of it.

White lawmakers make up almost two-thirds of the Legislature, but only 43 percent of the state population is white. Men make up half of the state’s population but hold almost 80 percent of the Legislature's seats. Just about any way you slice the numbers, the makeup of the Legislature is at odds with the state.

With the 85th Legislative Session set to gavel in Tuesday, here’s a look at the demographics of the Legislature by lawmakers’ race, gender, age, education and religion.

Bob Daemmrich for the Texas Tribune


After months of sparring over whether transgender Texans should be allowed to use bathrooms that align with their gender identity, Republican Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick on Thursday officially set the legislative stage for the debate.

Todd Wiseman / Texas Tribune

From the Texas Tribune: A Texas judge issued an injunction Saturday against a federal mandate aimed to protect transgender people, finding that the federal health rule violates existing law.

The preliminary injunction, granted by U.S. District Judge Reed O'Connor, is in response to a lawsuit filed by Texas, on behalf of religious hospital network Franciscan Alliance, and four other states in August.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

From the Texas Tribune: After more than a year of delays, Texas is officially kicking Planned Parenthood out of the state’s Medicaid program.

In a move that could affect thousands of low-income women, state health officials on Tuesday delivered a final legal notice to defund the organization from the Medicaid program through which it provides family planning and women’s health services to the poor. 

Tamir Kalifa/Texas Tribune

From the Texas Tribune:

After coming out on the losing end of a United States Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage, Texas Republican leaders are now looking to the Texas Supreme Court to narrow the scope of that landmark ruling.

Erik Hersman/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Mallika Das, a U.S. citizen who was born in India, walked into a Williamson County polling place in 2014 eager to cast her ballot. 

Because she was not proficient in English and had found it difficult to vote in the past, Das brought her son, Saurabh, to help her. They both spoke Bengali, an Asian dialect. But when Saurabh told poll workers he was there to interpret the English ballot for his mother, the duo ran into an unexpected requirement.

Kevin Lamarque/REUTERS

Texas could be on the hook for more than $4.5 million as part of its failed legal battle to defend its 2013 abortion restrictions, which the U.S. Supreme struck down as unconstitutional in June.

Callie Richmond/Texas Tribune

Texas' rate of uninsured people fell to 17.1 percent in 2015 as part of a steady decline in the share of uninsured residents following the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, according to new Census estimates released Tuesday.

The state's rate of uninsured fell two percentage points from 2014 to 2015, but Texas still has the highest percentage of people without health insurance in the country. Texas is also home to the largest number of uninsured people in the country with about 4.6 million uninsured residents. 

Illustration by Todd Wiseman

Ramping up its fight over the rights of transgender people, Texas is expected to file a lawsuit 

Tuesday against the federal government over a regulation prohibiting discrimination against transgender individuals in some health programs. 

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