Texas Lege

News & Politics |
January 13, 2021

“Something Has To Change”

In the months after Merci Mack’s murder, Dallas’s trans community has expanded its organizing efforts. Meanwhile, the Lege is set to consider expansion of the state’s protections against discrimination.

Best and Worst Legislators |
June 30, 1997

Commonsense Conservatism

Remember the Sherlock Holmes story in which the great detective solves a mysterious death case because a dog did not bark at a thief in the night? The lesson is that what doesn’t happen can be just as important as what does happen—in crime or in the Legislature. (Please, no

Best and Worst Legislators |
June 30, 1997

Family Man

With his spectacles and bushy mustache, he looks like everybody’s favorite uncle, and appropriately, his niche in the Legislature is to take care of the kids: juvenile justice, safe schools, and adoption laws. In the age of family-values politics, Goodman brings a quiet rationality to issues that have been known

Best and Worst Legislators |
June 30, 1997

The Bill Doctor

Caught in a real-life episode of E.R., Senator Teel Bivins spent the final week of the legislative session performing triage on bills that were at death’s door. As our story begins, a perspiring Bivins frantically tries to revive Governor Bush’s charter schools program, which is among the 52 bills that

Best and Worst Legislators |
June 30, 1997

Master of the Playground

Hugo Berlanga said at the start of the session that he was tired. The time had come to do something else. He was burned-out.Mark it down that this burnout had a long fuse. Hugo—he’s a first-name figure—had a session for the ages. Through behind-the-scenes negotiations and timely amendments, he influenced

Best and Worst Legislators |
June 30, 1997

Special Awards

Best PunGovernor George W. Bush. Explaining at a pre-session gridiron dinner how he had turned a deaf ear to his wife’s entreaties that he purchase new formal wear for the event, Bush said he told her, “Read my lips. No new tuxes.”Going…Going…GoneThe legislative leadership team had a lot more on

Politics & Policy |
June 30, 1997

The Worst of the Worst

Say what you will about Arlene Wohlgemuth (and everybody did), but she will go down in legislative history. Way down. Wohlgemuth was the perpetrator of the Memorial Day Massacre, when in a fit of rage she killed 52 bills and managed to unite a previously divided House—against her.It is the

Best and Worst Legislators |
June 30, 1997

The One Hundred Club

Most legislators who land on the Worst list do so through ineptitude or blunder. John Shields is different: He actively auditioned for the role. He performed as if he had researched the bad old days and come up with a surefire course of action that the greenest freshman would know