House Speaker Joe Straus Is Texas' Last Shield Against Bathroom Bill

On the grounds of the Texas Capitol, Phillip Jones, a leader in Dallas' hospitality industry, said he was disappointed Republicans like Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick are backing a bill he says discriminates against transgender residents and could adversely affect the state's economy.Then he had a moment of optimism."Thank God for Joe Straus," he said, cracking a smile.Straus is the last major barrier to the "bathroom bill" being pushed by Patrick and supported by Abbott, who put the matter on his agenda for the special legislation session that began last week.The Senate, working at a fast clip to approve Abbott's priorities, gave a final nod to a bathroom bill early Wednesday morning. Now the House gets its turn, where Straus is presumably waiting to kill the legislation.  Continue reading...

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