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U.S. Senate

Miguel Gutierrez Jr./The Texas Tribune

Some of the newest entrants in the crowded U.S. Senate Democratic primary are disclosing their first major fundraising figures as the Republican incumbent, John Cornyn, continues to stretch his financial advantage.

The candidates have until the end of Tuesday to report their numbers to the Federal Election Commission for the last three months.

Angela Piazza / The Texas Tribune

Former U.S. Rep. Pete Sessions is an unnamed member of Congress mentioned in an indictment against two business associates of President Trump’s personal attorney, Rudolph Giuliani, according to NBC News.

The Russian government's interference in the 2016 U.S. elections singled out African Americans, a new Senate committee report concludes.

Using Facebook pages, Instagram content and Twitter posts, Russian information operatives working for the Internet Research Agency had an "overwhelming operational emphasis on race ... no single group of Americans was targeted ... more than African Americans."

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / The Texas Tribune

U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, has almost $11 million saved up for his reelection campaign after he raised close to $3.2 million in the third quarter, his campaign told The Texas Tribune on Monday.

Leslie Boorhem-Stephenson / The Texas Tribune

Democrat Chris Bell, the former Houston congressman and gubernatorial nominee, is formally announcing his U.S. Senate campaign.

The CEOs of 145 companies issued a new call for gun safety Thursday, sending a letter to members of the Senate on Thursday stating that it is "simply unacceptable" to do nothing about gun violence and mass shootings in the U.S.

Saying the country is in a public health crisis, the CEOs say new laws that would require background checks on all gun sales "are a common-sense solution with overwhelming public support and are a critical step toward stemming the gun violence epidemic in this country."

Emree Weaver / The Texas Tribune

For years, state Sen. Royce West has raked in millions in legal fees representing governmental entities such as the Dallas and Houston independent school districts, metropolitan transportation agencies and major Texas cities, sparking criticism that he is using his influence as a state lawmaker to score business deals average citizens can’t get.

Democrats are hoping to flip six congressional seats in Texas in 2020. On Monday, Wendy Davis announced she’s running for one them.

Leslie Boorhem-Stephenson / The Texas Tribune

State Sen. Royce West made it official Monday: He’s running for U.S. Senate, joining a crowded and unsettled Democratic primary in the race to unseat Republican John Cornyn.

Associated Press

MJ Hegar, the leading U.S. Senate challenger in Texas, rides a Harley-Davidson in viral videos and has called herself "an ass-kicking, motorcycle-riding Texas Democrat."

She is not a Democrat who promotes "Medicare for All." She mentions that during a narrow loss for a House seat last year, her campaign signs appeared in front yards that also had ones for Republicans. And she sees unintended consequences with White House candidates who say they'll decriminalize border crossings.

Associated Press

State Sen. Royce West, D-Dallas, appears to be in for the U.S. Senate race.

He has an announcement planned for Monday in Dallas, but on Friday, paperwork was filed with the Federal Election Commission establishing a "Royce West for U.S. Senate" campaign and declaring him a Democratic candidate for the seat. 

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / The Texas Tribune

Houston City Councilwoman Amanda Edwards announced Thursday morning she is running for U.S. Senate, joining an increasingly crowded primary to challenge Republican John Cornyn.

Associated Press

The Senate has approved bipartisan legislation providing $4.6 billion to care for thousands of migrants streaming into the U.S. across the Mexican border.

U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, announced Tuesday his 2020 campaign manager will be John Jackson, who led Gov. Greg Abbott's successful re-election bid last year.
Shelby Knowles for The Texas Tribune

 

Cornyn announced Tuesday his campaign manager will be John Jackson, who led Abbott's successful re-election bid last year, an early hire that suggests the state's senior senator is not taking 2020 for granted.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., announced Tuesday he is canceling the annual August recess to deal with a legislative backlog he blamed on the chamber's Democratic minority.

"Due to the historic obstruction by Senate Democrats of the president's nominees, and the goal of passing appropriations bills prior to the end of the fiscal year, the August recess has been canceled," McConnell said in a statement that made official a decision that had been anticipated for weeks.

This is how the Senate changes — not with a bang, but with a motion to overturn the ruling of the chair.

By a simple majority vote, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., set a new precedent in the Senate that will ease the confirmation for President Trump's Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch on Friday, after 30 more hours of debate on the floor.

"This will be the first, and last, partisan filibuster of a Supreme Court justice," said McConnell in a closing floor speech.

Thursday is the day the judicial filibuster in the Senate is scheduled to die. There hasn't been much of an effort to save it, but there have been a lot of lamentations for the slow demise of the World's Greatest Deliberative Body (WGDB), otherwise known as the U.S. Senate.

Here are five insights into what the death of the judicial filibuster means:

1. The winners and losers

Texas Tribune

It’s been smooth sailing so far for Texas Republican John Cornyn in his bid for a third term in the U.S. Senate.

His wide lead and enormous war chest have given him the luxury of waging a non-traditional campaign that includes an effort to draw minority voters into the Republican fold.

Shelley Kofler / KERA News

Senator Ted Cruz is unapologetic for leading the fight that has brought the federal government close to defaulting on its debt payments.

The Senate approved a sweeping immigration bill Thursday, endorsing a bill that would put millions of immigrants who illegally entered the United States on a path to citizenship. The final vote tally on the bill was 68 in favor, with 32 opposed.

The bill also includes measures that would punish employers who take advantage of immigrant workers, as well as providing billions in spending to employ fences and high-tech tools to help secure the border between the U.S. and Mexico.

All 52 Democratic senators voted for the bill, along with 14 Republicans and two independents.

Courtney Collins / KERA News

  Freshman Texan Ted Cruz made his first formal speech from the floor of the U.S. Senate today, offering an amendment to defund the Affordable Care Act, a.k.a. Obamacare. (He did speak last week during Sen. Rand Paul's marathon filibuster protesting U.S. drone policy, but did not offer legislation for discussion.)

The Senate began debate on the proposal to pull funding for the health care law this afternoon, but the solid Democratic majority ensures that Cruz's amendment has almost no chance of passing.

After 20 years in the Senate, Texas Republican Kay Bailey Hutchison bid farewell to colleagues in an emotional speech that urged more bipartisan cooperation.

Sen.-elect Ted Cruz has come out of his victory over Paul Sadler swinging. In a speech to the Federalist Society on Friday, he joked, "I’m pretty certain Mitt Romney actually French-kissed Barack Obama."

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

Texas Senator Wendy Davis says her top legislative priority is education funding. The newly re-elected lawmaker who beat Republican Mark Shelton says she is not just for public schools, but also for higher education.

At the top of the Texas ticket, Republican Mitt Romney is expected to win and claim the state’s 38 electoral votes.

District 10 is one of the most expensive state senate races in Texas history, and in Tarrant County it’s coming down to the wire as Republican Rep. Mark Shelton battles to unseat Democratic State Sen. Wendy Davis.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

Republican senate hopeful Ted Cruz campaigned today in north Dallas with both of the state’s Republican U.S. Senators. 

Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Paul Sadler has little money and faces an uphill battle. But during a stop in Dallas Wednesday he said voters shouldn’t count him out, even though he's trailing in the polls by double digits. In the last week, he has finally had enough money to launch a TV ad against Republican opponent Ted Cruz.

Courtney Collins / KERA News

In the home stretch of his campaign, Republican Senate Candidate Ted Cruz is stumping for himself and fellow GOP candidates.

L.M. Otero / Associated Press

As early voting begins across Texas today, U.S. Senate candidates Paul Sadler and Ted Cruz are entering the home stretch of a long campaign. During their last debate Friday at KERA studios, Democrat Sadler and Republican Cruz presented sharp differences on many issues -- especially taxes.

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