The Good, the Bad and the Ugly – Legislative Preview

Next week, lawmakers return to Austin to be sworn in and begin the 84th legislative session. They’ve already been filing bills for more than a month, and we’re gearing up for what’s to come. Check out a break down of the good, the bad and the ugly.



  • Jessica Farrar – HB 232: Would make it legal for women to breast-feed in public and would require state agencies to establish work site policies allowing their female employees to breast-feed
  • Mary González – HB 90: Would make girls ages 15 and older, who meet the necessary criteria, eligible for benefits from state-funded women’s health services
  • Donna Howard – HB 256: Would provide funds for child care services to student parents at risk of dropping out of school
  • Celia Israel – HB 78: Would allow citizens to register to vote online
  • Ruth Jones McClendon – HB 65: Would allow certain counties and hospital districts to use public money to fund disease control pilot programs in order to contain and control the spread of infectious diseases
  • Toni Rose – HB 212: Would allow a child to consent to his or her own immunization in certain circumstances if he or she is over 14
  • Senfronia Thompson – HB 187 (similar to the equal pay bill passed last session): Would establish a Texas law to provide for employee compensation in the case of an employer’s unlawful discriminatory practice
  • Sylvia Garcia – SB 141: Would establish a non-partisan voter education program for high school seniors


  • Dan Flynn – HB 106: Would allow any person licensed to carry a handgun to openly carry that handgun
  • Tim Kleinschmidt – HB 176: The Second Amendment Preservation Act
  • Drew Springer – HB 308: Would decrease restrictions on where persons may cary handguns and in the case of a person breaking the law, the crime would be reduced from a Class A misdemeanor to a Class C misdemeanor


  • Allen Fletcher – HB 113: Would restrict abortion on the basis of the sex of the unborn child
  • Jeff Leach – HB 205: Would prohibit an entity or affiliate of an entity that performs abortions from providing human sexuality or family planning instruction or instructional materials in a public school

Patsy Woods Martin to Stay on as Executive Director of Annie’s List

Today, Annie’s List Board Chair Amber Anderson Mostyn announced that Patsy Woods Martin will stay on as executive director of the organization. At the time an Annie’s List board member, Patsy Woods Martin stepped in as interim executive director following the passing of Executive Director Grace Garcia in an accident in June.

Mostyn said Patsy’s passion for the Annie’s List mission and her strong leadership skills make her the ideal person to lead the organization.

“The Annie’s List Board is confident Patsy Woods Martin will take Annie’s List to the next level,” said Mostyn. “She has done a remarkable job building upon the work set in motion by Grace Garcia, and she has strengthened the organization as a whole. Under Patsy’s leadership, I know Annie’s List will do even more to engage women across the state in a meaningful way. That’s how Annie’s List will continue to change the face of power in Texas.”

Pasty Woods Martin said she was compelled to stay on as executive director because she was impressed by the staff and was thrilled about the organization’s many opportunities going forward.

In particular, Annie’s List is developing plans to travel across the state during the month of February to meet with Annie’s List supporters and discuss how the organization can grow at a grassroots level. The organization will also hold nine candidate trainings across Texas for women interested in running for office, in addition to being vocal during the legislative session like it has never been before.

“I am honored to have been asked to stay on as executive director of Annie’s List. I am proud of what we have accomplished this year, and I look forward to the many opportunities we have going forward, in particular growing our network to engage more women in the political process,” Woods Martin said. “The work Annie’s List does is incredibly important, and it’s near and dear to my heart. We’ve seen first-hand the impact of having more women in office, and I have a renewed commitment to that cause.

“We have a number of tremendous opportunities to do more in 2015 and beyond, and I know the Annie’s List team is going to accomplish great things. I am especially looking forward to the Annie’s List statewide tour, which will provide a critical opportunity for conversations with women across the state. It is time to change the face of power in Texas.”

Annie’s List to Continue to Engage More Women

November 4, 2014
Contact: Sarah Rivin

Annie’s List to Continue to Engage Texas Women
Austin, TX – Annie’s List Interim Executive Director Patsy Woods Martin released the following statement regarding tonight’s election results:

“We are proud to have supported more endorsed candidates in a single cycle than ever before. We also had two women running at the top of the Democratic ticket – a first for Texas.

“While we wish that every one of our Annie’s List endorsed candidates had won her race, we applaud the courage of all of these women willing to run, even in districts where the challenges were great.

“This is just the start of a remarkable time for women in Texas, a time when women across the state are coming together, taking action and finding their voice. We’ve made progress engaging more women, and we will continue leading that mission. We are committed to learning from this election cycle.

“The issues that have become the central focus this year are issues of critical importance to Texas women. In this election, issues such as equal pay for all Texans and women’s access to health care became key components of the political discourse.

“The conversation has now started in earnest – and it will not end with these elections. We will work with our elected officials during this legislative session to ensure that the issues of importance to women stay at the fore. We’ll also continue to encourage more courageous women run for office across the state.

“When more and more women become engaged, more and more women become elected. We’ll continue building on this year’s momentum for the next cycle and beyond.”


Dan Patrick’s Lie on School Funding Dangerous for Texas Families

Yesterday, the Austin American-Statesman’s PolitiFact confirmed Dan Patrick is lying to Texans about his votes to cut education funding.

In August 2014, Dan Patrick’s campaign claimed that the senator “led the charge” to restore the 2011 funding cuts to education. The Austin American-Statesman reported, “We didn’t recall him leading the charge to restore most of the cut funding. As it turned out, we didn’t find convincing evidence he did.” [Austin American-Statesman, 9/14/2014]

PolitiFact ruled, “Patrick said that in the 2013 session, ‘I led the charge to restore most of the education cuts from last session.’ It’s not clear to us how someone can lead in putting money back by voting against it. Pants on Fire!’” [Austin American-Statesman, 9/14/2014]

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Annie’s List launches WhyWeNeedMoreWomen.com!

Last week Annie’s List launched WhyWeNeedMoreWomen.com.

We know that when women have a voice in government, everyone wins. More female leaders will mean our government takes more advanced positions on all issues, including education, infrastructure and more.

Join our website and share your stories about why we need more courageous women like Wendy Davis in the State Legislature.