Sunday, May 17, 2015

Final two weeks of the Texas Lege

That's if there is no special session, of course, and the odds are good that one will be called to address the budget if the current Cold War between the House and the Senate prevents a compromise.  So with a lot of business remaining and a short time to get it done, this checklist from Progress Texas is a great place to both keep up and take action.

  1. Texas Democrats Block Anti-Gay Marriage Bill, Republicans Vow to Revive It - A bill would have barred Texas from issuing marriage licenses, even if the Supreme Court rules in favor of marriage equality.
  2. Texas GOP Block Proposal They Said Was Necessary for Medicaid Expansion - Republicans said they need block grants to fix healthcare - then they blocked the block grants.
  3. Why Would Republicans Give Abusive and Absentee Parents Final Say in Teen Abortions? - The headline about sums it up, this is a terrible bill that poses more questions than answers.
  4. Final Weeks for Legislature to Address Marijuana Policy Reform - The unprecedented progress we've seen on marijuana policy reform could culminate with a limited medical marijuana proposal.
  5. Jade Helm: Not the Only Military Controversy Looming Over Greg Abbott - Republicans propose cutting a college aid plan that the state promised to military families.

Pro-choice activists are needed tomorrow at the Capitol.

Now that the House has officially passed its deadline to introduce new legislation, we’re going to start heading over to more Senate committees as they hear bills that have already moved through the House. Here’s a recap on how awful these bills are:

HB 3994: the very harmful bill that attacks abused and neglected teens’ access to abortion and requires all people seeking abortion to have a government ID, is set on the major state calendar on Wednesday, May 13. For more information on why judicial bypass is a safety net for teens, read this blog post from Emily Rooke-Ley, Hotline Coordinator at Jane’s Due Process.

HB 416: Relating to requiring personnel of abortion facilities and certain other facilities performing abortions to complete training on human trafficking. This bill would require abortion providers and all staff that come in contact with patients to complete a mandatory human trafficking training. First, abortion providers already provide this training to staff. This training should be required of other health providers who are far more likely to encounter trafficking survivors. Here’s more on the true intentions of this bill.

We’ll see you Monday. Don’t forget to wear your orange!

Follow the action on the Twitter hashtag #TrustTX.

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