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Texas Lawmaker’s Aide Wounded in Shooting at Congressional Baseball Practice: Your Texas Roundup

Plus: Beyoncé may soon be bringing twins into this unworthy world, Lone Star businesses back NAFTA, and Texans weigh in on Trump in a new poll.

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QUOTE OF THE DAY


“Officers advised the cows to steer clear of the complainants’ house in the future. I cannot remember a time when cows have been mistaken for burglars. Burger-lers yes, burglars no.”

—Dallas Police Major Max Geron on Twitter, according to the Dallas Morning News. A Pleasant Grove woman called the police early Wednesday morning to report that someone had broken into her car. When police arrived, they found two escaped cows leaning on a car. The cows had apparently made noise, leading the woman to believe her vehicle was being burglarized. 


BIG NEWS


Investigators search for evidence at the Eugene Simpson Stadium Park, where a shooting happened on June 14, 2017 in Alexandria, Virginia.

Alex Wong/Getty

Shots Fired
A gunman opened fire at a Republican congressional baseball team’s practice in Alexandria, Virginia on Wednesday morning, injuring a Louisiana lawmaker and a staffer of Texas U.S. Representative Roger Williams. As of Thursday morning, Louisiana Representative Steve Scalise was in critical condition, but Williams’ staffer Zack Barth, a 24-year-old Houston native and recent graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, has been released from the hospital and is expected to make a full recovery, according to the Texas Tribune. Four Texas lawmakers were on the field practicing before the shooting—U.S. Representatives Kevin Brady, Mike Conaway, Williams, and Joe Barton, who had brought his two sons. But somewhat miraculously, Scalise and Barth were the only ones who were shot. “On any other given day, our pitchers would have been throwing in the bullpen right where the shooter appeared,” Brady told the Tribune. “They would have been trapped, but they’re all resting their arms.” Williams, one of the team coaches, told the Tribune on Wednesday afternoon that he was hitting grounders to Scalise at second base when the shooting began. He ran for the dugout, where team members huddled around Barton’s young son to protect him. That’s when Williams realized Barth had been shot. “Then all of the sudden one of my directors in my office—he got shot and he came hauling into the dugout and fell into my arms and we were both hugging each other,” Williams said. “[Arizona Representative] Jeff Flake got his belt off and put a tourniquet on his leg and stopped the bleeding.” Congressional security details and Capitol police responded to the shooting, and the suspected gunman, James T. Hodgkinson, a 66-year-old unemployed home inspector from southern Illinois, was shot during the ensuring altercation and later died from his injuries, according to the Washington Post. Hodgkinson had reportedly been living in a van in Alexandria for the past few months, and his Facebook page was littered with anti-Trump messages. He was armed with a military-style rifle and a handgun. “There were dozens, if not hundreds of shots,” Barton told reporters a few hours after the shooting, still in his baseball jersey, with one of his sons standing next to him. “It was very scary.”


MEANWHILE, IN TEXAS


Beybies
Is Beyoncé in labor? That’s what the Internet seems to think. Houston’s Queen Bey has been pregnant with twins for a while now, and though there’s absolutely no confirmation whatsoever that she’s actually in labor, Beyoncé’s biggest fans are buzzing anyway. According to E News, Beyhive sleuths are putting some major clues together that indicate Beyoncé could be about to give birth. Among the more interesting rumors: a fleet of blacked-out Escalades was spotted departing Bey and Jay’s neighborhood on Tuesday and driving to a Los Angeles hospital, where the singer is suspected to have been admitted under an alias; sources told E News that Beyoncé has requested to have an entire hospital floor cleared to protect her privacy from paparazzi; and her hairstylist posted an ambiguous photo with Beyoncé on Instagram, writing “Hang in there, Mama!” Plus, she was already super pregnant when she announced she was having twins in February, so it’s very possible Beyoncé’s due date is, like, now-ish. Anyway, go ahead and freak out, because it looks like we’re about to get two tiny additions to Texas’s very own royal family.

NAFTA Fans
A handful of Texas business groups teamed up to back the North American Free Trade Agreement, asking President Donald Trump not to mess with the U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade deal. The Texas Association of Business, the Texas Business Leadership Council, and the Borderplex Alliance joined forces to formally launch the Texas-Mexico Trade Coalition, according to the Houston Chronicle. The organization’s goal is to “ensure that the administration and our leaders in Congress understand the importance and positive impact of NAFTA on our economy,” the group’s new website says. Texas seems to be the only state so far with a group of businesses dedicated to preserving NAFTA, which is key in the Lone Star State because of its trade relationship with our border buddy. In May, Trump sent a notice to Congress that he plans to renegotiate NAFTA, and he has previously referred to it “the worst trade deal ever,” according to the New York Times.

Survey Says
A new University of Texas at Austin and Texas Tribune poll indicates most Texans disapprove of the job Donald Trump has done so far as president, but Republicans in the state are still holding it down for him. Overall, 43 percent of respondents gave Trump the thumbs up, and 51 percent disapprove. Only 35 percent of those surveyed said they found Trump trustworthy. But a whopping 80 percent of Texas Republicans approve the Trump presidency so far. Among Texas Democrats, though, a similarly whopping 90 percent disapprove. “If anyone has had a rough launch, it’s Donald Trump,” Jim Henson, co-director of the poll and head of the Texas Politics Project at the UT, told the Tribune. “But Texas Republicans are holding steady. They continue to embrace him.” Texas Republicans and Democrats were similarly split on Russia, with 81 percent of Republican respondents saying that they don’t think Russia influenced the 2016 election, compared to 75 percent of Democrats responding that they do think Russia meddled in the vote.


WHAT WE’RE READING


Some links are paywalled or subscription-only.

A contingent of officials from the Rio Grande Valley met with congressmen in D.C. to “tell the Valley’s story” McAllen Monitor

LSU pressured the state of Louisiana into canceling several UT football satellite camps set to be held there Sports Illustrated

Fort Worth’s murder rate is up 70 percent Dallas Morning News

Meet the “Turtle mama” of Padre Island Victoria Advocate

Firefighters in San Antonio rescued a bunch of puppies from a house fire KENS-5

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  • anonyfool

    That 80% approval rating is mind boggling in the display of ignorance of current events.

    • Jed

      remember: what they voted for was MORE RACISM, HATRED, and FEAR, and they are getting it … why wouldn’t they be happy?

      • anonyfool

        OK, I’ll grant you that Trump was able to inadvertently lower immigration rates AND tourism rates simply by his rhetoric and sending ICE to enforce existing laws (which went against what everyone thought was possible with illegal immigration), and for the fundamentalists, he was able to put a right winger on the Supreme Court but he been a failure at every other thing he campaigned upon (officially since he tended to ad lib and contradict himself a lot) – a wall, stopping Muslim immigration, changing trade deals to *improve* America’s hand, draining the swamp, put her in jail, getting cheaper healthcare to everyone.

        • Jed

          just more fodder for continued hate-filled screeds. those aren’t failures, they are conspiracies.

          at this rate, the guy could make himself emperor and 30% of america (and over half of texas) would say “yes, please.”