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April 1, 2016
President Obama's Criminal Justice Reform

Obama Commutes Sentences for 61 Nonviolent Offenders

President Obama commuted sentences for 61 nonviolent offenders this week, proving yet again his serious commitment to criminal justice reform. Since President Obama took office, he has issued more commutations - cutting short a person's time in prison -...
March 31, 2016
Twenty Years of Empty Seats in Texas' Federal Courts

Twenty Years of Empty Seats in Texas' Federal Courts

Ed. note: the following is cross-posted from the Texas Research Institute . Texas has eleven empty seats in its federal courts . That’s more vacancies than any other state in the country, and a new court vacancy will come up on May 1. When you add the...
March 14, 2016

Texas Marijuana Policy Reform 101

During our SXSW marijuana panel, we announced a new study on the economic impact of marijuana laws in every Texas county. You can donate to the study at .
February 16, 2016
Ted Cruz Court Vacancies

Ted Cruz Lied About Supreme Court Confirmations

Ted Cruz has a history of refusing to recommend judges to fill Texas' vacant court seats . So maybe it should come as no surprise that he would lie about filling the most recent vacancy for the U.S. Supreme Court. During the last GOP debate, Cruz lied...
January 11, 2016

Redistricting: The Erasure of Political Opponents

My Zilker Park-area voting precinct in Austin is a very active, progressive precinct. It votes about 75 percent for Democrats. Despite that, our congressman is Republican Lamar Smith, the right-wing extremist and anti-science chairman of the House Science...
December 17, 2015
Texas DPS adopts rules for limited medical marijuana law

Texas Adopts Rules for Limited Medical Marijuana

Texas' first medical marijuana law is one step closer to full implementation. Today, the Texas Department of Public Safety has, through its Public Safety Commission, formally adopted the rules that will govern the Texas Compassionuate Use Program . That's...
November 2, 2015
Will Texas Get New Redistricting Maps for 2016?

Will Texas Get New Redistricting Maps for 2016?

We're halfway through the decade and the state of Texas still doesn't have final redistricting maps for Congressional and State House seats. The process has been stuck in Texas' courts for years, but an upcoming deadline for the 2016 election cycle has...
October 20, 2015

Record Number of Texans Support Marijuana Policy Reform

The momentum continues to grow for marijuana policy reform. After a year of unprecedented progress for marijuana policy reform and good polls from earlier this year , a new poll from the Texas Lyceum finds that a record 74% of Texans support reducing...