Gov. Abbott Signs Texting While Driving Ban into Law

Gov. Abbott Signs Texting While Driving Ban into Law

Gov. Abbott Signs Texting While Driving Ban into Law

The Republican governor of Texas on Tuesday called for a special state legislative session that could allow lawmakers to adopt a bill to restrict access to bathrooms for transgender people, something seen by critics as discriminatory and economically damaging. "A special session was entirely avoidable, and there was plenty of time for the Legislature to forge compromises to avoid the time and taxpayer expense of a special session".

"When legislators return to Austin on July 18, they should expect to meet stiff resistance not only from the ACLU, but from every Texan who believes everyone deserves a fair shot rather than a government running roughshod over our civil liberties", Burke said.

Greg Abbott promised to add a slew of hardline conservative items, like a so-called "bathroom bill" to discriminate against transgender public school kids, to a special session of the Texas Legislature.

Privacy, of course, is code for a vile "anti-trans bathroom bill". In addition to a proposal that would introduce restrictions on public school restrooms for transgender students, the items include actions that would abrogate city rules regarding heritage trees, annexation and permitting processes.

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"It was certainly widely expected that Gov. Abbott would call a special session: There are many items that Texas legislators did not act on, perhaps because they were distracted by the numerous, cruel efforts to enshrine anti-LGBT discrimination into law".

Photo illustration for news story on texting while driving laws, photographed Friday, July 10, 2015, in the parking lot of the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Other lawmakers say it's unnecessary. However, Abbott warned during his announcement that the bill he signed "did not fully achieve my goals" and called for "legislation that fully pre-empts cities and counties from any regulation of mobile devices in vehicles" during the special session.

OTHER EDUCATION POLICY: Abbott endorsed legislation that would increase teacher pay statewide by $1,000 and proposals giving school administrators more flexibility in hiring and retaining teachers.

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"To protect women in Texas I am calling on the Legislature to complete their work and to pass legislation to address the maternal mortality rate in Texas", Abbott said.

Rep. Chris Turner, D-Arlington, chairman of the House Democratic caucus, said Abbott's laundry list of special session topics ws a symptom of the governor's lax leadership during the regular legislative session.

Gov. Greg Abbott signed Tom Craddick's bill, which will ban texting while driving across the state. He says he wants legislation that will override city ordinance so there isn't a "patchwork quilt" of distracted driving laws across the state.

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