Texas Standard for May 29, 2024: What do primary results tell us about the state of the Texas GOP?

Infighting between the state’s top Republican lawmakers has dominated the headlines over the last six months, leading to conflicting endorsements in primary races this spring. What do the results tell us about the state of politics in Texas’ ruling party?

By Texas StandardMay 29, 2024 9:34 am,

Here are the stories on Texas Standard for Wednesday, May 29, 2024:

Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan narrowly wins runoff

After the most expensive runoff for a Texas House seat in state history, House Speaker Dade Phelan held on to his spot in District 21 of East Texas by a mere 350+ votes, facing a well-funded challenger backed by the far right of the Texas GOP.

Phelan became a target for ultraconservatives for failing to pass the governor’s school voucher-like plan and for leading a failed attempt to remove fellow Republican Attorney General Ken Paxton from office.

Houston Public Media’s Andrew Schneider reports on the implications of Phelan’s big win:

Despite Phelan win, moderate Republicans still took a beating in other races

Though many today are reading Phelan’s victory as a win for the more moderate elements of the Texas Republican Party, the spoils may not be what they seem. Gov. Greg Abbott claims he now has enough votes to pass school choice, the voucher-like plan that Democrats and rural Republicans have resisted for decades.

Sharon Navarro, a political science professor at the University of Texas at San Antonio, joins us today to discuss the other race results:

Concordia University Texas hopes program will address nursing shortage

Concordia University Texas is launching a nursing scholarship as a way to get more students into the field.

KERA’s Penelope Rivera reports it’s helping to address the state’s nursing shortage:

An ag magazine ranked the best U.S. counties to farm. How did Texas fare?

Even though, year after year, the suburbs eat up more farmland in Texas, there are still a lot of places where agriculture is the biggest driver of the local economy. And Farm Futures magazine recently ranked all the counties in the U.S. to determine the best and worst places to farm.

Bryce Knorr, a contributing market analyst for Farm Futures, joins us to discuss the results and how Texas fared.

Right-leaning industry groups voice support for Biden measure

President Joe Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act may have some unlikely allies: Two right-leaning industry groups have voiced their support for the president’s climate law and said they’d defend it – at least, certain parts of it – if former President Donald Trump were to be re-elected.

Kelsey Brugger reported on the story for Politico and joins us today.

This week in Texas music history

On May 30, 1928, one of the swankiest orquesta bandleaders was born in Beeville, fifty miles north of Corpus Christi.

Jason Mellard with the Center for Texas Music History at Texas State University shares the story.

How Austin residents have a say in how their utility provider operates

Our home station of KUT News has been looking into how local institutions play a big role in day-to-day life in Austin, and it’s hard to think of one more important than Austin Energy, the city’s electric utility.

KUT’s Mose Buchele and Jennifer Stayton recently met up for a party at a moontower and learned about how residents have a voice in how the utility operates.

What do the primary results tell us about the state of the Texas GOP?

It’s no secret that the Texas Republican Party is in turmoil. Infighting between the state’s top lawmakers has dominated the headlines over the last six months.

As the state gears up for a big election in November, this infighting led to conflicting endorsements in primary races this spring. With the runoffs from those primaries finally resolved, what do the results tell us about the state of politics in Texas’ ruling party?

Deirdre Delisi, a political consultant and former chief of staff to Gov. Rick Perry, joins the Standard to discuss.

All this, plus the Texas Newsroom’s state roundup and Raul Alonzo with the Talk of Texas.

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