As Texas prepares for the convening of the 82nd Legislature on January 11, several important bills pertaining to the right of Texans to keep and bear arms will come under consideration. Among the gun rights-related bills is HB 145, which was introduced by Rep. Jodie Laubenberg (R-Dist. 89). If HB 145 becomes law, Texas would become the latest state to join the ranks of those which have adopted a Firearms Freedom Act.
Prior to the midterm elections, the Alaska Senate race was predicted to be the one to watch, as it went from a two-way race between Tea Party favorite Joe Miller and Democrat Scott McAdams to a three-way race after Republican Lisa Murkowski announced her decision to mount a write-in campaign in order to remain a contender. Thus far, the race has not disappointed.
After Rahm Emanuel resigned his position as White House chief of staff and announced his intent to run for mayor of Chicago, it seemed his bid would be challenging as he would face a number of other contenders. The New York Times indicates, however, that the flood of people interested in succeeding Mayor Richard Daley has trickled, but that Emanuel continues to face a number of other challenges, most notably reacquainting himself with the ins and outs of Chicago politics.
Among the many controversial debates awaiting congressional newcomers is that of an earmarks ban. This week, both the House and Senate Republican conferences will be voting on whether they should impose a ban on earmarks — special projects to which congressmen appropriate funds in spending bills. The vote will likely be one of many issues that signal a divide between veteran Republicans, establishment Republicans, and those of the Tea Party caucus.