Texas Supreme Court Declines To Rule In Houston Same-Sex Benefits Case

This week in Texas politics with the Texas Tribune.

By Rhonda FanningJune 30, 2017 1:27 pm, , ,

It’s time for a look at the week that was in Texas politics with Emily Ramshaw, editor-in-chief of the Texas Tribune.

In a highly-anticipated action, the Texas Supreme Court chose not to rule in a high-profile case, returning it instead to a lower court. The case is related to the City of Houston’s provision of spousal benefits to city employees who are in same-sex marriages. The city cited the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in favor of same-sex marriage, but some Houston taxpayers filed suit, objecting to the city policy.

“This isn’t a huge surprise coming from the Texas Supreme Court, which is certainly a conservative court in a conservative state,” Ramshaw says. “But I still think this ruling was very disappointing to a lot of folks who felt like the lower courts had spoken.”

Many observers were surprised Thursday by the announcement that former U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison has been tapped to be the Trump administration’s ambassador to NATO. Hutchison, who represented Texas in the Senate from 1993 to 2013, is considered a moderate Republican. She maintained a low profile during the presidential campaign, as she has since President Donald Trump’s election. The position requires Senate confirmation, which Hutchison is expected to gain easily.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has joined nine other state attorneys general in calling on the Trump administration to repeal DACA, the Obama administration program that allowed young, unauthorized immigrants to remain in the U.S. and earn work permits.

Listen to the full interview in the audio player above.