Tough Session Ahead For State Legislature

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AUSTIN (AP) – Texas voters chose more of the same in the Texas Legislature next year. They maintained the partisan balance in the Senate and added only a handful of Democrats to the House.

They also chose new, more conservative freshman Republicans. They will challenge House Speaker Joe Straus and Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, who presides over the Senate. Conservatives have complained that both men are too moderate and too quick to maintain bipartisan traditions, such as appointing senior Democrats to chair some committees.

Straus in particular is facing a challenge from his right flank, with state Rep. Bryan Hughes of Mineola running to replace him. Conservative critics tried to overthrow Straus in 2011, but he managed to hold on to the Speaker’s gavel.

Dewhurst will also try to prove his conservative credentials.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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