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Kinky Friedman, Texas satirist, dies at 79

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by By Joshua Fechter and Emily Foxhall, The – 2024-06-27 10:37:40

SUMMARY: Richard “Kinky” Friedman, the provocative Texas satirist and 2006 gubernatorial candidate, has died at 79, at his Medina home. Known for his flamboyant persona and political campaigns against Republican Rick Perry in 2006 and for agriculture commissioner in 2010 and 2014, Friedman was celebrated for his satirical country band Kinky Friedman and The Texas Jewboys and novels featuring a fictionalized version of himself. Advocating for unconventional policies like marijuana legalization and same-sex marriage, Friedman left a distinctive mark on Texas culture. This report is developing. Notably, Liz Cheney, John Fetterman, and Kevin Stitt will appear at The Texas Tribune Festival in Austin.

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Texas’ 2024 Democratic delegates: What you need to know

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by By Jasper Scherer, The – 2024-07-21 16:00:31

SUMMARY: Texas has 273 delegates, the third-largest contingent after California and New York. Delegates are selected in four ways. Firstly, 159 district-level delegates were elected from congressional districts at the Texas Democratic Convention, based on Democratic turnout. Secondly, 53 at-large delegates representing the state were also selected there. Additionally, Texas will send 32 delegates who are party leaders and elected officials, including mayors and lawmakers. Finally, 29 automatic delegates, similar to superdelegates, include members of the Democratic National Committee and the state's entire Democratic congressional delegation. These groups predominantly consist of Democratic activists and leaders.

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Joe Biden withdraws from presidential race

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by By Isaac Yu and Matthew Choi, The – 2024-07-21 13:28:52

SUMMARY: President Joe Biden announced he will not seek reelection, citing it as the best decision for his party and country. This follows increasing party pressure and concerns around his debate performance and age. He endorsed Vice President Kamala Harris for the Democratic nomination. Biden's move is the first presidential withdrawal since Lyndon B. Johnson in 1968. The Democratic National Convention in Chicago will likely select the next nominee, making it the first contested convention since 1968. Biden's polling has declined further, especially after a failed assassination attempt on Donald Trump sparked Republican unity. Harris's polling remains slightly better than Biden's.

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Jim Pitts, former Texas House member, has died at 77 .

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by By Pooja Salhotra, The – 2024-07-21 11:55:00

SUMMARY: Former Texas state Rep. Jim Pitts, a Republican from Waxahachie who served nearly a decade as the chief budget writer for the Texas House, died at 77. Pitts, who passed away at Baylor University Medical Center surrounded by loved ones, represented House District 10 from 1993 to 2015 and chaired the Appropriations Committee for many years. Known for his commitment to education and fiscal responsibility, Pitts was praised for his bipartisan support and strong character. He played a key role in replacing House Speaker Tom Craddick with Joe Straus in 2009. Memorial service details are pending.

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The Texas Tribune is a nonprofit, nonpartisan media organization that informs Texans — and engages with them — about public policy, politics, government and statewide issues.

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