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Nehls campaign probed over rent payments to his company

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by By Matthew Choi, The – 2024-05-10 16:28:24

SUMMARY: U.S. Rep. Troy Nehls, R-Richmond, is being investigated for allegedly using campaign funds for personal use, with $25,000 in rent paid to his own company Liberty 1776, which lacks clear campaign-related use. While Nehls insists on the legitimacy of these expenses and states his willingness to cooperate with the House Ethics Committee, the Office of Congressional Ethics could not validate the campaign use of the funds and reported the case to the Ethics Committee for further investigation. Nehls declined to cooperate with the Office, established under Nancy Pelosi, questioning its legitimacy but remains open to the House Committee's scrutiny.

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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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Texas STAAR test: Student math and science scores plummet

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by By Sneha Dey, The – 2024-06-14 12:47:49

SUMMARY: State testing data reveals significant declines in Texas students' math and science scores post-pandemic. Only 26% of fifth graders met science standards, a 21-point drop since 2019. Math scores also fell, with 41% of students demonstrating adequate understanding. The data underscores COVID-19's severe impact on learning, with concerns about lasting workforce implications. Texas Education Commissioner Mike Morath noted that disruptions have hindered students' math proficiency. However, bilingual students showed notable gains, surpassing pre-pandemic levels in reading and social studies. The story is developing, with upcoming appearances by political figures at The Texas Tribune Festival in Austin.

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Austin gun shop owner wins fight to overturn bump stock ban

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by By Dante Motley, The – 2024-06-14 11:20:58

SUMMARY: An Austin gun shop owner, Michael Cargill, won a Supreme Court case overturning a federal ban on bump stocks. The court's 6-3 decision ruled that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) wrongly classified bump stocks as machine guns under legislation banning such weapons. Bump stocks enable semi-automatic rifles to fire rapidly. Cargill's case, supported by the New Civil Liberties Alliance, argued that ATF overstepped its authority. Justice Clarence Thomas stated that bump stocks do not make a semi-automatic rifle a machine gun. Justice Sonia Sotomayor dissented, asserting bump stocks fit the machine gun definition.

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Texas Supreme Court denies case that could have imperiled IVF

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by By Eleanor Klibanoff, The – 2024-06-14 10:38:05

SUMMARY: The Texas Supreme Court declined to review a significant in vitro fertilization (IVF) case involving Gaby and Caroline Antoun, who divorced in 2022 and disputed over their frozen embryos. Despite Texas' abortion laws labeling embryos as unborn children, courts upheld the original agreement granting the embryos to Gaby Antoun. Caroline appealed, arguing the embryos should have the same rights as living children, but both the lower court and the Texas Supreme Court rejected this. Historically, courts have treated embryos as a unique category. This decision leaves Texas' IVF practices unchanged but highlights ongoing legal ambiguities around reproductive technology.

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