Politics

Political news

Donald Trump speaks at the National Rifle Association forum in Dallas.
Lynda M. González / Texas Standard

President Donald Trump is speaking at the American Farm Bureau Federation’s convention in Austin on Sunday. That means people driving downtown will likely experience delays. 

Updated at 3:10 p.m. ET

Amid much pomp and circumstance, the Senate took some of its first steps on Thursday to prepare for next week's impeachment trial of President Trump, just the third such trial in Senate history.

Chief Justice John Roberts, having crossed First Street from the Supreme Court building over to the Capitol, joined senators in the chamber and then was sworn in by Senate President pro tempore Chuck Grassley of Iowa. Roberts will preside over the trial.

Updated at 6:20 p.m. ET

A federal watchdog concluded that President Trump broke the law when he froze assistance funds for Ukraine last year, according to a report unveiled on Thursday.

The White House has said that it believed Trump was acting within his legal authority.

Salvador Castro for KUT

Feb. 3 is the last day to register to vote before the March 3 primary elections in Texas. Here’s what you need to know to register.

Updated at 6:30 p.m. ET

The House of Representatives has delivered articles of impeachment against President Trump to the Senate, which is expected to begin a trial next week.

Earlier in the day, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi named seven Democratic members of Congress as the managers who will argue the case for impeachment.

Those managers brought the articles to the Senate on Wednesday evening.

A view of Austin from the Capitol Rotunda.
Austin Price / The Texas Tribune

A sleeping giant looms over the Democratic presidential campaign, even as excitement continues to build toward the first-in-the-nation contests in Iowa and New Hampshire.

That behemoth is Texas.

Marley Duchovnay and Casey Moore are from the East Coast. They chose Smithville, Texas, as the home for Project Divided to move outside their comfort zones, just as they encourage people to do in converstions with those holding different political views.
Martin do Nascimento / KUT

When two 2019 college grads from the East Coast noticed a lack of important — and civil — conversations about critical issues, they decided to help make those conversations happen. And what better place to do that, they figured, than Texas.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Texas will not be resettling refugees in the new fiscal year, Gov. Greg Abbott told federal officials Friday.

State officials had until the end of the month to let federal officials know whether they would resettle refugees, many of whom are fleeing violence in their home countries. The federal government reimburses states for each person they resettle.

Just days after ending his campaign for president, former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro is endorsing Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

The two will hold a rally together Tuesday evening in Brooklyn.

Julián Castro speaks at a rally at Cheer Up Charlies in Austin on June 28, 2019.
Michael Minasi for KUT

Julián Castro, the former U.S. secretary of Housing and Urban Development under President Obama and mayor of San Antonio, announced Thursday morning he is dropping out of the race for the presidency.

Annie Mulligan for The Texas Tribune

HOUSTON — An audible groan erupted in the lounge area of Houston’s Gulf Coast Distillers in late October when high-profile Trump campaign operative Mica Mosbacher invoked the idea of a Democratic presidency.

Montinique Monroe / KUT

Weeks after dropping out of the presidential race, Beto O'Rourke has launched a new political group to boost Texas Democrats in the 2020 election.

Listen to The NPR Politics Podcast here.

The impeachment of President Trump has dominated the news this week. But the political focus shifted to the Democratic presidential candidates Thursday night for their sixth debate, this one in Los Angeles and hosted by the PBS NewsHour and Politico.

Angela Hsieh / NPR

Seven Democratic presidential candidates debated Thursday night, the smallest group yet. The December debate, hosted by Politico and PBS NewsHour, took place at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. NPR reporters provided live analysis of the candidates' remarks.

Gov. Greg Abbott
Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / The Texas Tribune

A month ago, agriculture commissioner Sid Miller faced online backlash after tweeting the phrase “get a rope” – a statement critics said harkens back to lynching African Americans in the South in the 19th and early 20th century.

On Saturday, Gov. Greg Abbott did the same thing.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

On the MSNBC News program "Morning Joe" last month, host Joe Scarborough drove the conversation about a poll he said showed former Vice President Joe Biden had fallen to fourth place in Iowa. 

Voters line up to cast ballots at Austin Community College's Highland Campus in 2016.
Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

Almost 80 percent of county election websites in Texas are not secure ahead of the 2020 presidential primary, according to a report from the League of Women Voters of Texas.

Former El Paso Congressman Beto O'Rourke
Michael Minasi for KUT

Beto O’Rourke is reiterating that he is not running for U.S. Senate next year as speculation swirls ahead of the Monday filing deadline.

State Rep. Rick Miller, R- Sugar Land
Emree Weaver / The Texas Tribune

State Rep. Rick Miller, R-Sugar Land, is no longer running for reelection after he sparked a firestorm for saying he was facing primary challengers because they are “Asian.”

The U.S. Capitol
Shelby Knowles for The Texas Tribune

WASHINGTON — U.S. Rep. Kay Granger, R-Fort Worth, was in Congress for over a decade before she narrowly won a bid to become the top Republican on the powerful House Appropriations Committee last year.

Former Austin Assistant City Manager Terrell Blodgett and others speak out against Texas' mobile voting ban.
Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

The Texas Secretary of State is being sued over a new law banning local governments from setting up temporary polling locations – or any polling location that isn’t open throughout all of early voting.

Angela Hsieh / NPR

Ten candidates are taking the stage for the November Democratic Debate in Atlanta, amid public hearings in the impeachment inquiry into President Trump. NPR reporters will be providing fact checks and analysis throughout the debate. Follow along.

Annette Elizabeth Allen / NPR

House Democrats have resumed public impeachment hearings with testimony from a central figure who could be their most important witness yet.

NPR

House Democrats are set to kick off week two of their open impeachment hearings on Tuesday with witnesses who listened firsthand when President Trump spoke with President Volodymyr Zelenskiy on July 25 — a key moment in the Ukraine affair.

Gov. Greg Abbott talks with state Reps. Kyle Biedermann, R-Fredricksburg (left) and Poncho Nevarez, D-Eagle Pass
Bob Daemmrich for The Texas Tribune

State Rep. Poncho Nevárez, an Eagle Pass Democrat and House chairman, turned himself in to authorities to be booked on felony drug possession charges Thursday evening and was released after posting his bond of $10,000, according to both the lawmaker and the Texas Department of Public Safety.

Republican U.S. Rep. Will Hurd of Helotes
Bob Daemmrich for The Texas Tribune

Retiring U.S. Rep. Will Hurd, R-Helotes, is spearheading a new group to elect a more diverse slate of Republicans across the country, the latest sign that he plans to remain politically involved as he leaves office.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Texans voted on 10 constitutional amendments this Election Day. The propositions ranged from prohibiting an income tax from ever being collected in the state to allowing law enforcement animals to stay with their handlers when they retire.

A vote sign outside the George Washington Carver Branch Library on Tuesday.
Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

Texans are voting  on 10 amendments to the state constitution. Closer to home, Austinites are deciding the fate of two city propositions.

Here’s what you need to know before you head to the polls.

You can go to VoteTravis.com to check if you are indeed registered properly in Travis County. Check out this site to verify your registration anywhere in the state.

Beto O'Rourke
Michael Minasi for KUT

Former El Paso Congressman Beto O’Rourke has dropped out of the crowded 2020 Democratic presidential race.

Julie Gilberg helps with voter registration
Andrea Garcia for KUT

If counted accurately, the 2020 U.S. census is expected to show a boom in Texas’ Latino population. That’s why groups in the state say they plan to focus their efforts on making sure Latinos here fill out the form and get counted.

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