The Lege Opens, Here's What Happens Next

Not all of the bills are bad! Our analysis of the just-begun 88th Texas Legislature.

Art by Zeke Barbaro / Photos by Jana Birchum, John Anderson, Getty Images

As was demonstrated in 2021 with the House Democrats' dramatic end-of-session walkout, the primary task for progressives in most legislative sessions is to kill bills. Then, it was "election integrity" voter-suppression bullshit; now, it may be vouchers to subsidize the students at Regents and Hyde Park Baptist schools, or anti-trans bills that equate gender affirming therapy with child abuse, or even more restrictions on reproductive freedom and even more lifting of restrictions on deadly weapons.

The Dems are outnumbered, but not by so much that they can't do damage, and especially in the House, they include subject-matter experts on issues that suburban GOP voters care about deeply, like their kids not getting murdered or the human rights of their gay friends and relations. So it's possible that we'll see some happy endings to the story arcs we preview here – from the budget to the opioid epidemic to the humanitarian crisis at the border. – Mike Clark-Madison

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88th Texas Legislature, LGBTQ, border, immmigration, abortion

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