Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas

June 17, 2013

Texas Democrats complain about ethics vetoes

By Chris Tomlinson
Associated Press

AUSTIN — The Texas House of Representatives is back in Austin, and Democrats are angry about Gov. Rick Perry vetoing key ethics legislation.

Democratic Rep. Sylvester Turner of Houston took to the House floor on Monday and questioned what will happen to 400 ethics investigations the Public Integrity Unit is currently working on.

The governor used his line item veto to cut $7.5 million for the unit on Friday. He said no taxpayer money should go to it because Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg refused to resign following a drunk driving conviction.

Conservative Republicans have long wanted to take the ethics watchdogs out of the Travis County DA's office, where Democrats have always won election.

Perry's critics complain that his veto could shut down investigations into his office and its programs.