NORTH TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) – In this week’s episode of Eye on Politics, Jack Fink talks to the former governor. Rick Perry on his support for legalizing mobile sports betting. He is also joined by two congressmen from North Texas as they speak on the change of power in the US House.
Each week, CBS 11 political reporter Jack Fink breaks down some of the biggest political stories grabbing the headlines in North Texas and beyond. He watches the latest episode of Eye on Politics in the video player above and streams new episodes live every Thursday and Friday at 7pm on CBS News DFW.
Texas mobile sports betting
State lawmakers are preparing for their next legislative session starting in January. Sports teams and betting platforms are hoping a new push will boost their chances of legalizing mobile sports betting in Texas. The group called the Texas Sports Betting Alliance has hired a powerful spokesperson: former Texas Governor Rick Perry.
A bill to legalize mobile or online sports betting is under development for the next legislative session.
You cannot watch sports on TV without seeing more ads from sports betting platforms. But while you can bet on a game or match right on your phone in 35 states, Texas isn’t one of them.
Perry, who once said he opposed the idea, is now backing it in the Lone Star State.
Watch the video in the player below to learn more about the issue.
Protections for same-sex marriage
Some lawmakers in the US Senate and House of Representatives hope to pass bipartisan legislation that recognizes same-sex marriage and repeal the Defense of Marriage Act, which only recognizes marriage between a man and a woman.
Democrats in the US House introduced legislation earlier this year after the US Supreme Court overturned Roe vs. Wade.
In his concurring opinion, Justice Clarence Thomas said even the nation’s highest court should reconsider its ruling granting same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide.
While Democrats passed their bill in the House with Republican support, a majority in the US Senate gave its initial support, but made some changes to the legislation.
The bill does not require states to grant a marriage license to same-sex couples, but it does require states to recognize those marriages from other states.
The legislation also maintains religious freedoms that would not force non-profit organizations to provide services for wedding celebrations and does not deny the tax-exempt status of churches and universities if they do not recognize gay marriage.
Supporters in Congress want to pass the measure in the coming weeks while the House remains Democratic-majority.
The US Senate will vote on the measure and then go back to the House.
Watch the video in the player below to hear a couple of Planos hoping their bill will be approved.
North Texas congressmen react to shifting balance of power
Republicans have regained the majority for the new session of Congress which begins in early January. Jack spoke to two North Texas members from both sides of the aisle to hear how they are reacting to this shift in power.
Republican Congressman Pat Fallon of the Fourth District said his top priority now that his party is back in power is to protect the border. But he anticipates that even with his party in power, his goals will be difficult:
“We have divided the government. But at least now we are sitting at the table again”.
Democrat Congressman Marc Veasey of the 33rd congressional district said he would like it if both sides could come together to work on border security.
“I have been a strong advocate of making sure we improve the security of our borders by spending our dollars smartly,” he said.
Some of the border security ideas he cited include investing in technology to help scan trucks crossing for possible harboring migrants. He also said the system itself needs to be addressed.
But he says Republicans have not wanted to work with Democrats on this issue in the past and it’s hard for him to imagine that they will want to negotiate now that they’re back in power.
Meanwhile, Fallon said House Democrats and President Joe Biden are unwilling to compromise.
“They didn’t want to talk, negotiate, chat, anything,” she said. “I don’t think that’s the right way for the American people to govern.”
Looking to 2024, both congressmen said they would welcome another Joe Biden presidential run, albeit for different reasons.
“He did a great job,” Veasey said. “I think she has an amazing vision for America.”
Fallon, meanwhile, thinks a Biden run might help her party.
“I definitely think President Biden should run again,” he said. “Because I think he’s going to get beaten.”
To hear more of Jack’s conversations with Congressmen Veasey and Fallon, watch the full episode of Eye on Politics in the video player at the top of this page.