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#txlege budget writers in denial on prisoner health care

In its Legislative Appropriations Request, the Texas Department of Criminal Justice said its needs an additional $247 million in order to continue delivering inmate healthcare at current levels, and ideally would like tens of millions more to make salaries more competitive. In response, the initial Texas House budget authorized an additional $160 million, and the Senate budget cut medical care by $1.3 million, reported the Texas Tribune.The House clearly came up with the $160 million number beca...
Tags: Texas, Law, Senate, House, Legislature, Texas Tribune, Texas House, Gritsforbreakfast, TDCJ, Lege


Trump strikes back.

President @realDonaldTrump’s letter to @SpeakerPelosi concerning her upcoming travel pic.twitter.com/TtBCvwp080 — Sarah Sanders (@PressSec) January 17, 2019 AND: Politico characterizes Pelosi's disinvitation of Trump for the State of the Union as "a carefully crafted, old-school letter," in which she "played the political game on her terms and accomplished three important things."But Scott Adams calls it a strategic blunder (because the House setting for the SOTU is boring and now Trump can g...
Tags: Law, House, Trump, Sotu, Scott Adams, Pelosi, Ann Althouse, Sarah Sanders, Trump's shutdown


"House Republican leaders removed Representative Steve King of Iowa from the Judiciary and Agriculture Committees on Monday night as party officials scrambled to appear tough on racism and..."

"... contain damage from comments Mr. King made to The New York Times questioning why white supremacy is considered offensive. The punishment came on a day when Mr. King was denounced by an array of Republican leaders, though not President Trump. The Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell, suggested Mr. King find 'another line of work' and Senator Mitt Romney said he should quit. And the House Republicans, in an attempt to be proactive, stripped him of the committee seats in the face of multipl...
Tags: Law, Senate, House, New York Times, Iowa, The Times, Mitt Romney, Mitch McConnell, Lincoln, King, Trump, Racists, Kevin McCarthy, Steve King, Ann Althouse, Racial Politics


Search and Seizure: Can the Police Search My House if You Leave Your Child Home Alone

My question involves civil rights in the State of: Alabama. Can the police search my home if I leave my four-year-old child at home alone? She was asleep and it was four in the morning.
Tags: Law, Alabama, House, Criminal Procedure


NRA 2019 Board Candidate Lt. Colonel Willes K. Lee: Interview

Editor Note: AmmoLand News has officially endorsed Willes Lee for the 2019 NRA Board of Directors. Please consider him for your vote. NRA Board Candidate Lt. Colonel Willes K. Lee U.S.A. –-(Ammoland.com)- Later this month NRA members will receive their ballots to select members of the 2019 NRA Board of Directors. One-third of the Board's 76 seats are due to expire in April at the NRA Annual Meeting. Voting-eligible NRA members will determine which 25 nominees will receive a three-year term t...
Tags: Facebook, Guns, Obama, Congress, Senate, US, America, Military, House, Marco Rubio, US Senate, John, Goa, Gun Rights, Rnc, Nra


Confusing headline of the day: "Nancy Pelosi Spanks the First Brat."

Hint: It's Maureen Dowd's new column.It caught my eye because here in Wisconsin, a brat — rhymes with "squat" — is a very popular sausage. So what's "spanking the brat"? Seems like another one of the many euphemisms for masturbation.But the NYT is not Wisconsin, so it must be brat — rhymes with "slat" — "a child, so called in contempt" (to quote Samuel Johnson's "Dictionary of the English Language"). What brat would Nancy Pelosi be spanking? I'm thinking Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez or maybe Rashida...
Tags: Headlines, Law, Hillary Clinton, United States, House, Language, Wisconsin, Brats, Nancy Pelosi, Rhetoric, Motherhood, Hillary, Trump, Sartre, Samuel Johnson, Pelosi


Fixing longstanding criminal-justice problems in a black-ink budget year

Comptroller Glenn Hegar gave the Texas Legislature some good news with a black-ink budget projection for the coming biennium, suggesting they may have more than $9 billion more to spend than in 2017. Some of that will go for Hurricane Harvey costs (thought the Rainy Day fund should also contribute to that), some will get gobbled up with increased costs for entitlement programs, and any school finance fix will almost certainly consume the lion's share of the rest. But it's not inconceivable th...
Tags: Texas, Law, House, Legislature, DPS, RTA, Texas Legislature, LAR, Glenn Hegar, Legislative Budget Board, Gritsforbreakfast, TDCJ, Elsa Alcala, 85th Texas Legislature, Texas Indigent Defense Commission, Office of Capital


"Rep. Joe Cunningham, a newly elected Democrat from South Carolina, was barred from walking onto the House floor Friday as he tried to bring a six-pack of beer with him."

"The banned brewskis, from the Charleston area, were a gift for Rep. Peter DeFazio, D-Ore., a co-chair of the large House Small Brewers Caucus, Cunningham said on Twitter... 'Making friends when you’re a freshman is hard and I thought I’d grease the skids with some Lowcountry beer,' Cunningham said on Twitter, adding that DeFazio eventually got the beer. 'Can I join the beer caucus now?'"Fox News.In other beer news... [Author: [email protected] (Ann Althouse)]
Tags: Law, Congress, Beer, House, Dave Grohl, South Carolina, Charleston, Cunningham, Peter DeFazio, DeFazio, Ann Althouse, Joe Cunningham, House Small Brewers


"Maybe it’s the aunt or uncle you didn’t want to invite to the wedding," but Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez "is part of the family."

Said Rep. Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ), quoted in "Exasperated Democrats try to rein in Ocasio-Cortez/The effort is part carrot, part stick. But it's far from clear the anti-establishment political novice can be made to play ball" (Politico):Critics inside the [House Democratic Caucus] felt she didn't deserve [the seat she sought on the Ways and Means Committee], given her lack of professional experience on tax issues and her status as a freshman.“It totally pissed off everyone,” said one senior House D...
Tags: Law, Senate, White House, House, Donald Trump, Democratic, Democratic Party, House Democratic, Democrat Party, Congressional Progressive Caucus, Mitch McConnell R Ky, House Democratic Caucus, Emanuel Cleaver, Ways and Means Committee, Emanuel Cleaver D Mo, Ann Althouse


Attorney General Nominee Bill Barr reportedly to support FIRST STEP Act at coming hearing (and should be pressed on particulars)

This effective new Reuters article, headlined "Tough-on-crime record trails U.S. attorney general nominee into Senate hearings," reports on how the new AG-nominee's record on criminal justice issues and recent developments could intersect at next week's confirmation hearings. Here are the details: President Donald Trump’s nominee for U.S. attorney general is expected to tell a Senate panel next week that he supports a new law easing prison sentences for some criminals, even though he advocated ...
Tags: Law, Congress, Washington Post, Senate, Russia, US, Fbi, House, Moscow, Graham, Donald Trump, Doj, Justice Department, Lindsey Graham, Trump, Reuters


Despite Ban, N.H. Lawmakers Say They Will Continue To Carry Guns In The State House

Concord Monitor: A group of Republican state representatives are vowing to disobey a new rule banning firearms on the House floor, calling it “illegitimate” and dangerous. In a letter to the Monitor , Auburn Rep. Jess Edwards and seven other members of his party denounced the new rule as unconstitutional, arguing that representatives had no obligation to follow it. “We view Rule 63 as illegitimate,” the group wrote, referring to the new change, which passed the House last week. “We view Rule 63 ...
Tags: Military, House, Gun Control, State House, Democratic House, Jess Edwards, Wednesday Republican


Supreme Court declines to intervene in Virginia redistricting dispute

Today the Supreme Court rejected a request by Virginia legislators to put lower-court proceedings in a case challenging the legislative districts drawn for the state’s House of Delegates as the product of unconstitutional racial gerrymandering – that is, the idea that legislators relied too much on race when drawing the maps — on hold until the justices rule on the case. Today’s order means that a federal district court’s efforts to create a new map, with the assistance of a voting-rights expert...
Tags: Featured, Supreme Court, Law, California, Virginia, House, State, John Roberts, House of Delegates, Howe, Merits Cases, Virginia House of Delegates, Bethune Hill, Court The post Supreme Court


Prospects for reduced marijuana penalties in the 86th #txlege

The Texas Legislature this year is primed for its most serious effort yet at reducing penalties for user-level marijuana possession. Legalization is off the table. This is a debate about reducing punishments. (I'm setting aside here medical marijuana proposals, which Grits doesn't track closely and are outside my area of expertise.) There are essentially two proposals for reducing pot penalties that have a chance, and each have been endorsed by prominent Texas GOP officials. Gov. Greg Abbo...
Tags: Texas, Law, Gop, House, Speaker, Greg Abbott, Allen, Moody, Texas Legislature, Joe Moody, HB, Joe Straus, Gritsforbreakfast, House Criminal Jurisprudence Committee, Alma Allen


Morning Docket: 01.04.19

* That was quick! House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she'd wait until the Mueller report came out to talk about the possibility of impeaching the president, but one of her colleagues is planning to re-introduce articles of impeachment against Trump on the first day of the new Congress. [CNN] * The Senate Judiciary Committee has set a confirmation hearing for William Barr, the nominee for U.S. attorney general, on January 15, and he'll get the "same fair and thorough vetting process" as all of his ...
Tags: Supreme Court, Law, Congress, Attorney General, Boston, America, House, Nancy Pelosi, Department Of Justice, Joe Arpaio, Donald Trump, Doj, Ageism, Brad Sherman, Trump, Senate Judiciary Committee


Nancy Pelosi Isn’t Taking Impeachment Off The Table For Donald Trump

The House Speaker isn't afraid to flex some legal muscle against the president.
Tags: Law, Government, House, Nancy Pelosi, Donald Trump, Quote Of The Day, Impeachment


The NYT looks for the Democratic Party candidate who "matches the moment," tells us what this "moment" is, and nudges the non-moment-matching would-bes to stay out of the way.

"It is hard to recall a recent presidential primary where, at the outset of the race, there was this much genuine mystery — not only about who would eventually emerge as the nominee, but who planned to run at all," write Jonathan Martin and Alexander Burns in "2020 Democratic Presidential Candidates Are Lining Up. Who Matches the Moment?" (NYT):Ms. Warren’s announcement Monday was expected. And it will not be a surprise when Senators Cory Booker of New Jersey and Kamala Harris of California ente...
Tags: Texas, Law, Obama, California, Senate, Elizabeth Warren, Hillary Clinton, House, Iowa, New Jersey, Warren, Biden, Kirsten Gillibrand, Vermont, Kamala Harris, Bernie Sanders


House Democrats Searching For Lawyers To Take Down Donald Trump

Committee members are being flooded with 'really impressive résumés.' Will yours be one of them?
Tags: Law, Government, House, House Of Representatives, Donald Trump, Quote Of The Day, Job Searches, Rep. Carolyn Maloney


Will Congress penalize colleges that increase tuition?

Senator Charles Grassley of Iowa will serve as chairman of the Senate Finance Committee during the upcoming 115th Congress. Senator Grassley’s decision to lead the Finance Committee may have important consequences for the nation’s colleges and universities. Grassley, a Republican, has criticized increased tuition charges in the face of the pronounced, tax-free growth of many college endowments.In light of his prior statements and the current political environment, a Grassley-led Finance Committe...
Tags: Books, Politics, Featured, Taxes, Education, Law, Congress, Senate, Tax, House, Iowa, Treasury, College Tuition, Tuition, Social Sciences, Vanguard


Kevin Spacey puts out a strange video.

He's defending himself somehow, in a puzzling way. The title "Let Me Be Frank" refers to his "House of Cards" character who is named Frank. I didn't watch that show, but I assume he's adopting the persona. The lines, as I heard them, are challenging us to give him a fair process and indicating that he intends to rise from what has been social death.Here's an article about it in Vox, giving some important context:News broke on December 24, 2018, that the two-time Oscar winner would be arraigned o...
Tags: Law, Boston, House, House Of Cards, Viral Video, Kevin Spacey, Vox, Frank Underwood, Claire, Underwood, Spacey, Ann Althouse, Nantucket District Court, Heather Unruh Allegedly Spacey


"Not one cent of our taxpayer money should be wasted on this absurd monument to Trump's racism and ignorance. It's revolting..."

"... to think that House Republicans can pull $5 billion out of thin air for this hateful vanity project, but immediately turn into hard-nosed misers should we dare to spend our money on something that actually matters and helps Americans, such as healthcare, education, or infrastructure. Go ahead, Donald, shut it down. You own it."Writes a commenter with over 3,000 up-votes on the NYT article "Government Shuts Down as Talks Fail to Break Impasse." From the article:While the president has been ...
Tags: Law, White House, House, Trump, Donald, Donald J Trump, Ann Althouse, Trump's wall, Trump and immigration, Trump's Congress


"House Republican caucus was thrown into chaos Thursday as conservatives revolted against a funding bill that includes no new money for President Donald Trump’s border wall."

"On the brink of a Christmastime shutdown, House Speaker Paul Ryan is confronting resistance from rank-and-file Republicans, who have begun personally egging on Trump to force a shutdown over the wall."Politico reports. [Author: [email protected] (Ann Althouse)]
Tags: Law, House, Paul ryan, Donald Trump, Trump, House Republican, Ann Althouse, Trump's wall, Trump's Congress


FIRST STEP Act approved by US House by vote of 358 to 36, will become law as soon as Prez Trump signs!!

As reported in this UPI piece, the US House of Representatives "overwhelmingly approved a bill overhauling the country's criminal justice system Thursday, sending the legislation to President Donald Trump's desk for a signature." Here is more: The chamber approved the First Step Act with a 358-36 vote two days after the Senate passed it by a similar margin of 87-12. Lawmakers expect Trump to sign the legislation into law Friday. The House approved a different version of the legislation earlier ...
Tags: Law, Congress, Senate, US, Gop, House, Ted Cruz, House Of Representatives, Paul ryan, Mitch McConnell, Bill, Donald Trump, UPI, Trump, Criminal Justice Reform, DOP


A Democrat House Is Ready To Push Universal Background Checks

The Atlantic: During the November elections, a number of Democratic House candidates made gun control a central theme of their midterm campaign, and dozens more gave the issue strong emphasis on the trail. Next month, they might have a chance to follow through on their campaign promises with legislation requiring federal background checks on all gun sales. The legislation isn’t likely to become law. It will be a bit like Republican House efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act back in 2017, s...
Tags: Congress, White House, Politico, Atlantic, Military, Gop, House, Gun Control, Nancy Pelosi, Ucla, Thompson, Trump, Adam Winkler, Republican House, Parkland Florida


Morning Docket: 12.19.18

* Eighty-three judicial ethics complaints against Brett Kavanaugh have been tossed out by the Judicial Council of the Tenth Circuit due to an "intervening event": his SCOTUS confirmation. The Council, set up to fail by Chief Justice John Roberts, "[l]ack[s] statutory authority to do anything more." [National Law Journal] * The Senate passed the First Step Act in an 87 to 12 bipartisan vote, and now the sweeping criminal justice reform legislation will move on to the House for approval before be...
Tags: Google, Law, Washington Post, Senate, White House, Brooklyn, House, Donald Trump, Council, Irs, Law Schools, Biglaw, ABA Journal, John Roberts, D.C. Circuit, Dentons


After rejection of contentious proposed amendments, FIRST STEP Act passed by Senate by vote of 87 to 12!!!!

In this post back in August I wondered "Could enhanced FIRST STEP Act get more than 90 votes in the Senate if even brought up for a vote?".  Well, it seems I was off by three votes, as tonight the the US Senate voted 87 to 12 to enact the FIRST STEP Act.  With a vote in the House scheduled for later this week, this bill should be on Prez Trump's  desk before the end of this week and law before Prez Trump heads down to Mar-a-Lago for the holidays.  This USA Today article, headlined "Senate passes...
Tags: Utah, New York, Law, Congress, Senate, America, Barack Obama, Arkansas, House, Ted Cruz, Aclu, Mitch McConnell, US Senate, Louisiana, Usa Today, Naacp


Cloture vote on FIRST STEP Act gets super-majority support in Senate

As reported in this article from The Hill, the "Senate advanced a White House-backed criminal justice reform bill on Monday, paving the way for senators to try to pass the bill as early as Tuesday." Here is more on the vote and what comes next: Senators voted 82-12 to end debate on the legislation, which merges a House-passed prison reform bill with a handful of changes to sentencing laws. Twelve Republicans voted against advancing the legislation despite President Trump endorsing the measure i...
Tags: Utah, Law, Senate, White House, Cotton, Gop, House, Iowa, Mike Lee, Kennedy, Trump, National Review, Mitch McConnell R Ky, Toomey, Sens Chuck Grassley, Dick Durbin D Ill


Pelosi Will Betray California Because It is the Smart Move

The Republican Senate and the Democratic House will betray the states that are electorally safe. This will be the smart move. They will try to put extra money and programs into the battleground... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
Tags: Energy, Ecommerce, Politics, California, Senate, World, Military, United States, House, Innovation, Predictions, Pelosi


Virginia House of Delegates asks justices to intervene in redistricting dispute

Last month the Supreme Court announced that it would, for the second time, review a case from Virginia challenging the legislative districts drawn in 2011 for the state’s House of Delegates as the product of unconstitutional racial gerrymandering – the idea that legislators relied too much on race when drawing the maps. Today Virginia legislators were back at the court, in the lower court aimed at coming up with new maps for the 2019 election until the Supreme Court can rule on the dispute. Th...
Tags: Featured, Supreme Court, Law, Virginia, House, Paul Clement, John Roberts, House of Delegates, Howe, Cases in the Pipeline, What's Happening Now, Virginia House of Delegates


Congress finally enacts "Paroline fix" that should improve victim restitution in federal child porn cases

Long-time readers may recall regularly blogging here about federal district and circuit opinions struggling to figure out whether and how courts could impose restitution awards/punishments on federal offenders convicted only of downloading child pornography images.  Because the child porn restitution questions produced various splits in the lower courts, the Supreme Court took up and "resolved" these issues in Paroline v. US, No. 12-8561 (Apr. 23, 2014) (available here).  But because Paroline re...
Tags: Supreme Court, Law, Congress, Senate, US, House, Chuck Grassley, US Senate, Amy Klobuchar, Department Of Justice, Dianne Feinstein, Justice Department, Andy, Trump, Hatch, Amy


Kirsten Gillibrand is "running for president, and invoking the language of critical gender theory, she seems to believe, will help her in the primaries."

I'm reading another section of the Andrew Sullivan column I already linked to in the previous post (NY Magazine). Sullivan notes Gillibrand's recent tweet: "Our future is female. Intersectional. Powered by our belief in one another. And we’re just getting started." What's going on there?Gillibrand’s evolution... has been long in the works — and reveals, I’d say, where the Democrats are going. When Gillibrand was a member of Congress...He means when she was a member of the House of Representative...
Tags: Law, Congress, Senate, Feminism, House, House Of Representatives, Emma Sulkowicz, Kirsten Gillibrand, Al Franken, Franken, Andrew Sullivan, Gillibrand, Ann Althouse, Senate Ethics Committee, Kirsten E. Gillibrand, 2020 Campaign



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