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Home | Tag Archives: Texas Tribune

Tag Archives: Texas Tribune

El Paso Mayor Dee Margo: Today’s Texas Republican Party looks “Totally Different”

El Paso Mayor Dee Margo, a former Republican state representative, joined The Texas Tribune on Wednesday to talk about key issues facing El Paso and the difference between politics at the state and local level. Here are a few takeaways:

The Republican party in Texas looks “totally different” to him now than it did when he was in the Legislature.

When asked about the state of the Republican Party in Texas, Margo suggested that too many single issues are now driving policy decisions, and that lawmakers are voting based on what their party demands, versus what their constituents need.

Margo described himself as a fiscal conservative who’s more liberal on social policies, adding that he’s “never voted straight ticket in my entire life.” He later said he was never in favor of the “bathroom bill” that would’ve put restrictions on which public bathrooms transgender Texans could use.

Meanwhile, Margo declined to explicitly endorse any candidates running for office — though he said U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke, the El Paso Democrat who outraised U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz in the last reporting period in his campaign to unseat him, would do a great job in the U.S. Senate.

Margo suggested that some of Cruz’s “rhetoric” was problematic, and said he has a “real heartburn issue” with anything potentially detrimental to the El Paso community.

El Paso isn’t a sanctuary city, but that doesn’t mean he supports SB 4.

As the sixth-largest city in Texas — and the largest border city in Texas — the immigration debate before the Texas Legislature affects El Paso directly. Margo said if he were still a legislator he wouldn’t have voted for Senate Bill 4, which passed during the last legislative session and allows local law enforcement officers to question the immigration status of people they detain and arrest.

Margo described the city of El Paso as a “melting pot” and disagreed with President Trump’s intention to end family migration. He also said he’s not in favor of any expensive border wall.

Despite his disagreements with President Trump’s views on immigration, Margo made it clear that El Paso is no sanctuary city — one where law enforcement doesn’t cooperate with federal immigration laws.

El Paso doesn’t always get a fair shake.

Now that he’s running a city, Margo expressed concern that state legislators in Austin get to call the shots on matters like property taxes — issues that affect El Paso directly — without sufficient input from local politicians.

He also said El Paso doesn’t get the attention and resources it deserves from Austin or Washington. But he added that with an average workforce age of 31, the city is making efforts to position itself for the future.

Those efforts are why El Paso hoped for a shot at becoming the site of Amazon’s coveted second headquarters. Margo said El Paso has “all the attributes that an Amazon would want,” but the city didn’t make the shortlist with two other Texas cities, Austin and Dallas.

Author:  REGINA MACK – The Texas Tribune

EPCC to Host Texas Tribune’s ‘A Conversation with Mayor Dee Margo’

Community members are invited to a Conversation with Mayor Dee Margo, hosted by EPCC and moderated by Texas Tribune CEO Evan Smith on February 7th.

The discussion will be followed by an audience Q&A session, and the entire conversation will be livestreamed at and The video will be available for viewing afterward at the Texas Tribune site.

Margo was elected mayor in May 2017. Previously, he represented District 78 in the Texas House and served as chairman of the Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce. Margo also helped found the Regional Economic Development Corporation and served as president of the El Paso ISD Board of Managers.

Complimentary visitor parking is available in the parking lot adjacent to the building.

This event is supported by the Texas Municipal League, Pearson, the Law Office of Carlos Eduardo Cardenas, P.C. and Southwest Airlines, the official airline of Texas Tribune Events. It is hosted by El Paso Community College. Foundation support is provided by the Hatton W. Sumners Foundation.

This event will be held in the Building A Auditorium at the El Paso Community College Administrative Service Center (campus map). The event is free and open to the public and includes a light lunch.

WHAT: A Conversation with Dee Margo, Mayor of El Paso, hosted by The Texas Tribune

WHO: Dee Margo, Mayor of El Paso and Evan Smith, CEO of The Texas Tribune

WHERE: 9050 Viscount Blvd., Building A Auditorium at the EPCC Administrative Services Center.

WHEN: 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 7. Doors open at 11:30 a.m. Conversation and livestream begin promptly at noon.

Tribune events are also supported through contributions from our founding investors and members. Though donors and corporate sponsors underwrite The Texas Tribune events, they play no role in determining the content, panelists or line of questioning.

Audio: New Yorker’s Lawrence Wright: Here’s What Speaker Straus told me on “Bathroom Bill”

During a Tuesday interview on Texas Standard, a statewide news magazine based out of KUT Austin, author Lawrence Wright talked with The Texas Tribune’s Alana Rocha about “America’s Future is Texas,” his latest piece in The New Yorker.

In the article, Wright – a longtime staff writer for the magazine – includes the following quote from House Speaker Joe Straus about the “bathroom bill,” controversial legislation slated for the special legislative session that would regulate which bathrooms transgender Texans can use:

“I’m not a lawyer, but I am a Texan,” Straus said. “I’m disgusted by all this. Tell the lieutenant governor I don’t want the suicide of a single Texan on my hands.”

In this clip, Wright talks about his exchange with the speaker.

Listen to the full interview with Lawrence Wright on

Read related Tribune coverage:

  • Most Texas voters don’t rate proposals to regulate transgender people’s use of public restrooms as an important issue, according to the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll. [link]
  • In dueling press conferences in the final days of the regular session, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and House Speaker Joe Straus revealed themselves at an impasse over bathroom regulations that could prompt Gov. Greg Abbott to call a special session. [link]
  • A review of Gov. Greg Abbott’s schedule during May provides a glimpse into the final stretch of the legislative session, where the governor tried in vain to bring together lawmakers to avoid a special session. [link]

Author:  ALANA ROCHA – The Texas Tribune

Texas Tribune, UTEP to host free Symposium on Urban Public Education Friday

The Texas Tribune will host a free, open-to-the-public Symposium on Urban Public Education from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, Jan. 22, at The University of Texas at El Paso.

Symposium discussion topics will include educating the emerging demographic majority, social and emotional learning in public education and strategies for widening the high school-to-college pipeline.

Each of the four discussions will be followed by an audience Q&A session. A complimentary light breakfast and lunch will be provided. The conversation will be livestreamed at, and the video will be available for viewing afterward. For media RSVP, contact Natalie Choate at General registration is open at

WHAT: Texas Tribune Symposium on Urban Public Education


  • David Anthony, CEO of Raise Your Hand Texas
  • Richard Carranza, superintendent of the San Francisco Unified School District
  • Juan Cabrera, superintendent of the El Paso Independent School District
  • Paul Cruz, superintendent of the Austin Independent School District
  • Eric Gordon, CEO of the Cleveland Metropolitan School District
  • Terry Grier, superintendent of the Houston Independent School District
  • Michael Hinojosa, superintendent of the Dallas Independent School District
  • Susan Simpson Hull, superintendent of the Grand Prairie Independent School District
  • Elena Izquierdo, associate professor of teacher education at The University of Texas at El Paso and program area chair for bilingual/biliteracy
  • Mike Morath, Texas Education Commissioner
  • William Serrata, president of the El Paso Community College District
  • Evan Smith, The Texas Tribune’s CEO and editor-in-chief
  • Airick West, member of the Board of Directors for Kansas City Public Schools

WHERE: Tomás Rivera Conference Center, Union Building East 308, The University of Texas at El Paso, 500 W. University Ave., El Paso, TX 79968. Parking will be available in the Sun Bowl Parking Garage (map).

WHEN: 8 a.m. – 1 p.m. Friday, Jan. 22. Doors open at 8 a.m. Conversation begins promptly at 8:30 a.m.

CONTACT: The Texas Tribune – Natalie Choate (512-716-8640 or

UTEP to host Texas Tribune’s discussion on future of public education

The Texas Tribune is excited to present a special statewide series of public events looking ahead five years in eight major policy areas: criminal justice, energy, the environment, health, higher education, immigration, public education and transportation. Each event features a conversation with leading thinkers and policymakers on that day’s particular subject.

Join us in person at the University of Texas at El Paso on Friday, November 13th or on our livestream for the seventh installment of this series: a discussion on the future of public education in Texas. (Livestream viewers, please note the event will begin at 12 p.m. MDT/1 p.m. CST.)

The discussion is entitled ‘Public Education: The Next Five Years’

Our panelists are:

  • State. Rep. Mary González, D-Clint, member of the House Public Education Committee
  • Lizzette González Reynolds, chief deputy commissioner for the Texas Education Agency
  • Juan Cabrera, superintendent of the El Paso Independent School District
  • Eduardo Rodriguez, interim executive director of the Council on Regional Economic Expansion and Educational Development
This event will take place in the Tomás Rivera Conference Center in the Union Building (East 308) at UTEP in El Paso. It is free and open to the public, and includes a light lunch. Visitor parking will be available in the Sun Bowl Parking Garage (map).
  • Friday, November 13, 2015
  • 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.
    Conversation begins at 12 p.m.
  • Union Building East – UTEP Campus
    500 W. University Ave., El Paso, TX 79968
To RSVP click HERE | Questions? Please mail or call us at 512-716-8691.

The Texas Tribune’s statewide Conversation Series features in-depth discussions with prominent elected officials and newsmakers moderated by Evan Smith, CEO and editor-in-chief, and other expert journalists from The Texas Tribune. You can also watch the event on our livestream if you are unable to attend in person.

This event is presented by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas, Raise Your Hand Texas, Texas Standard, Educate Texas, College Board and UTEP and supported by The Meadows Foundation, El Paso Community Foundation and the Burdine Johnson Foundation. This series of conversations is sponsored by AT&T, Texas A&M University, BP, PepsiCo, Walmart and Southwest Airlines, the official airline of Texas Tribune Events. Tribune events are also supported through contributions from our founding investors and members.

Disclosure: Though donors and corporate sponsors underwrite The Texas Tribune events, they play no role in determining the content, panelists or line of questioning.

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