Politics | Texas Public Radio

Politics

Ryan Poppe | Texas Public Radio

The state’s public integrity unit has filed a request with the governor’s office and legislative budget officials to restore funding to the agency in 2015.

But that effort may not be possible unless the unit is moved out of the Travis County district attorney’s office, which is headed by Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg.

State Sen. Jane Nelson, R-Flower Mound, who chairs the Senate Committee on Finance, said she would like to see the unit moved in 2015. In a statement, Nelson wrote that "we need to move the unit somewhere less partisan."

Texas State Library & Archives Commission

Rick Perry isn't the first Texas governor to stare down an indictment for his actions in the office. 

In 1917 the Travis County district attorney’s office filed an indictment against then Gov. Jim “Pa” Ferguson for vetoing the budget of the University of Texas.

Professor Don Carleton, who heads up the Dolph Briscoe American History Center at the University of Texas at Austin, described the political climate at the time as being a prohibition vs. anti-prohibition, rural vs. urban environment of political bosses, and Ferguson certainly was that.

Ryan E. Poppe / TPR News

The cost of Texas Gov. Rick Perry legal dream team, who is fighting his two-count indictment, isn’t one that is expected to come cheap, but the governor’s campaign has announced it will be picking up the tab.

In the last two month just prior to Perry’s indictment, the governor's office said his legal tab for one attorney was running just over $80,000. Perry has since added three more attorneys to work on his defense.

Lucy Nashed, a spokesperson with the governor's office, said the Texas taxpayers have nothing to fear regarding the cost of the case.

Ryan E. Poppe / TPR News

Indicted Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s legal team is dismissing accusations that the governor’s veto of the state public integrity unit’s budget was related to another ongoing investigation involving the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas.   

Travis County Jail

Update (8/20):  Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s legal team are waiving their client's right to an arraignment and Perry has pleaded not guilty to both felony counts involving abusing the power of his office.

Perry is charged with abuse of power, a first-degree felony punishable by 5-99 years in jail, and coercion, a third-degree felony punishable by 10 years in jail. 

rickperry.org

Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s legal team said the governor’s 2013 announcement and veto of the state public integrity unit budget was the governor’s right to free speech and his desire to be transparent about his intended plans. Perry's attorneys say the court will see that the governor’s words did not constitute a threat.

In downtown Austin on Monday, just a few blocks from the state capitol, Houston attorney Tony Buzbee announced that he is Perry’s lead counsel on the case and then called the indictment "Banana Republic politics." 

Office of the Governor

The indictment of Gov. Rick Perry on two corruption-related felony counts took the state by surprise on Friday.

The abuse of power charge stems from Perry threatening to veto the funding of Travis County's public integrity unit unless Travis County District Attorney Rosmary Lehmberg resigned. She didn't and Perry vetoed the funds.

rickperry.org

Texas Gov. Rick Perry is calling the criminal indictments filed against him for coercion a political play. Perry contends he was only exercising his constitutional right to threaten and then veto the budget for the state’s public integrity unit and then called the indictments a partisan attack.

Flickr user Adam Fagen (afagen) / cc

This might be hard to believe, but there was a time when people trusted the government to do the right thing "always or most of the time."

In the early 1970s over 50% of people felt that way, with a large number also in the "only some of the time" category.

Then there was Watergate and the Nixon resignation, the latter's 40th anniversary was over the weekend. 

Eileen Pace

  Democratic candidate for lieutenant governor Leticia Van De Putte Tuesday unveiled her plan for a statewide education policy for pre-K through high school.

It's a comprehensive plan that promises to expand access to broadband for students, increase parent access to school board members, and restore school funding reduced by the last Legislature.

Van de Putte’s education plan is formed on the pillars of early childhood education programs, adequate funding for local schools, and getting rid of or cutting back on standardized testing.

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