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Texas Take


Apr 7, 2017

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick said he wanted a House vote on "school choice," vouchers to opponents. He got one.

The result was an overwhelming smackdown of the concept that Patrick and the Senate tagged as a top priority.

As the House moved ahead to adopt its version of the state budget, a much different document than the one approved by the Senate, arguments quickly started over which chamber will win in the closed-door negotiations to come up with a final budget before the end of May.

Just as they don't agree on the budget, House and Senate leaders are also split on other issues, including the ban on so-called sanctuary cities. Patrick has made it clear he and the Senate want a tough bill with penalties against local officials who don't cooperate with federal immigration enforcers, and the House is much less adamant.

U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke, a Democrat who's little known outside his home city of El Paso, announced he will run against incumbent GOP Sen. Ted Cruz. His chances in a solid Red State are open to debate, depending on which side of the political fence you're on.

And the clubby Senate opened up a bit to debate a bill regulating the number of chickens Texans can keep in their backyards, when Sen. Paul Bettencourt, R-Houston, did his impression of cartoon character Foghorn Leghorn, during the debate.

Seriously.

Get the lowdown on all the chicken stuff and other political intrigue in Austin in this week's Texas Take -- the leading political podcast in the Lone Star State -- where you get the inside scoop on the Legislature in simple language every Texan can understand -- unvarnished straight talk, as they say.

You can't make up stuff this good.