Texas Gov. Greg Abbott mulling special legislative session

Posted May 30, 2017

AUSTIN- Gov. Greg Abbott said Monday he will make an announcement later this week about whether he will call lawmakers into a special session.

It is widely expected that Abbott will call lawmakers back into session for a short-turnaround meeting - possibly just a few days in duration - to pass a bill continuing the operations of the Texas Medical Board and four related regulatory agencies.

"When it gets to a special session, the time and topics are exclusively up to the governor in the state of Texas", Abbott said in a statement.

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"The fix the House sent us doesn't work", he added."The only way to fix this is with a special session". He says, as of this writing, the reason lawmakers could head to a special session is a yet un-passed and "phenomenally boring" piece of legislation - the Sunset Safety Net Bill.

Abbott supports both issues but emphasized that as governor, he will control the timing and agenda of any special session.

The debate over the bathroom measure is largely one of scope.

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During a special session, the governor picks the topics to be addressed and he can call lawmakers back as many times, for as many special sessions as he would like, until the Legislature produces what he wants. Meanwhile, the CEOs of several prominent tech companies have signed a letter to Abbott asking him not to allow any discriminatory legislation, like the proposed bathroom bill, to become law.

Chances of a special session increased dramatically over the weekend when "sunset" legislation died. Signatories include Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg, Apple's TIm Cook, Amazon CEO Jeff Wilke, IBM Chairman Ginni Rometty, Microsoft Corp.

Good morning, y'all, and welcome to The Dallas Morning News' weekly political preview: The Look Ahead.

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