Emma Platoff, Texas Tribune

Emma Platoff is a breaking news reporter at The Texas Tribune. She previously worked at the Tribune as a reporting fellow and is a recent graduate of Yale University, where she studied English literature and nonfiction writing. She has also worked as the managing editor of the Yale Daily News and as an intern at The Philadelphia Inquirer and the Hartford Courant.

Texas Democrats are suing over a June 12 meeting House Speaker Dennis Bonnen had in June with one of his top lieutenants and Michael Quinn Sullivan, a hardline conservative activist, saying the three were engaged in serious campaign finance violations and demanding that Sullivan produce a full recording of the gathering that he has shared with only a small group of Republicans.

Last year, after a federal judge in Texas declared the entirety of the Affordable Care Act unconstitutional, throwing into question millions of Americans’ health coverage, the state’s Republican leaders promised they would come up with a plan to replace it.


In a major blow to the state’s government transparency laws, Texas’ highest criminal court has struck down a significant provision of the Texas Open Meetings Act, calling it “unconstitutionally vague.”

In what state Sen. Angela Paxton describes as an effort to safely expand Texas’ burgeoning financial tech industry, the freshman Republican from McKinney has filed a bill that would empower the office of her husband, Attorney General Ken Paxton, to exempt entrepreneurs from certain state regulations so they can market “innovative financial products or services.”

As he begins his second term, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is looking to expand the prosecutorial power of his office, asking the Legislature for more resources and expanded jurisdiction to go after crimes related to abortion and voter fraud.

Laura Skelding / The Texas Tribune

From The Texas Tribune:

 

The two have been tussling over committee assignments in recent days.

The 86th Legislature runs from Jan. 8 to May 27. From the state budget to health care to education policy — and the politics behind it all — we focus on what Texans need to know about the biennial legislative session.

HOUSTON — President Donald Trump, speaking Monday evening here at an uproarious rally, cast his 2016 battle with U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz as a thing of the past and blasted Cruz’s Democratic challenger, Beto O’Rourke, as a “stone cold phony.”

In an effort to restore public trust, all of Texas’ Catholic dioceses will release the names of clergy who have been “credibly accused” of sexually abusing minors, stemming back at least to 1950, the Texas Catholic Conference of Bishops announced Wednesday.

Leslie Boorhem-Stephenson / The Texas Tribune

Justin Nelson, a Democrat running for attorney general, is positioning himself as the champion of protections for pre-existing conditions, one of the most popular provisions of the landmark health care law.

From The Texas Tribune:

At their first debate in Texas’ 2018 U.S. Senate general election campaign, U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke, D-El Paso, and incumbent Sen. Ted Cruz, a Republican, traded blows Friday over a range of issues that included immigration and criminal justice.