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Guns in Courthouses and a Federal Judicial Backlog: Monday’s Show (September 12, 2016)

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton recently filed a lawsuit against Waller County over signs that ban firearms posted in its multipurpose county courthouse in Hempstead. The suit centers on an exemption in the state’s open carry law that prohibits firearms “on the premises of any government court or offices utilized by the court.” In a […]

Photo: Michael Hagerty, Houston Public MediaTexas Attorney General Ken Paxton recently filed a lawsuit against Waller County over signs that ban firearms posted in its multipurpose county courthouse in Hempstead. The suit centers on an exemption in the state’s open carry law that prohibits firearms “on the premises of any government court or offices utilized by the court.”

In a recent statement, Attorney General Paxton says the state’s licensed carry laws “allow government entities to exclude handguns from the portion of a building that houses an office utilized by a government court,” and that county treasurers’ offices and county elections offices do not qualify.

The attorney general filed a similar lawsuit against Austin over its ban on guns in its city hall.

On this edition of Houston Matters, we discuss the issue with the attorney general’s deputy chief of staff and the criminal district attorney for Waller County.

Also this hour:

Texas Federal Judicial Backlog Continues

There are currently 12 judicial vacancies on the federal bench in Texas — ten in district courts and two on the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. That’s more vacancies than any other state. We discuss what’s behind the backlog and the impact of judicial vacancies on federal courts with Houston attorney David Furlow, a member of the board of trustees for the Texas Supreme Court Historical Society.

Fielding Your Dog and Cat Care Questions

Once a month, veterinarian Dr. Lori Teller from the Meyerland Animal Clinic drops by to discuss the care and feeding of your canine and feline animal companions.

Osweiler and Fuller Lead Charge in Their Texans Regular Season Debut

Quarterback Brock Osweiler threw for 231 yards and a pair of touchdowns, and wide receiver Will Fuller caught five passes (including one touchdown reception) for 107 yards receiving, as the Houston Texans downed the Chicago Bears 23-14 in the Texans’ 2016 NFL regular season opener Sunday (Sept. 11, 2016). We discuss the game and other Bayou City sports developments with Jeff Balke. He writes for Houston Press and Houstonia Magazine and joins us most Mondays to discuss the goings-on in Houston sports.

Houston Matters offers a free daily, downloadable podcast here, on iTunes, Stitcher and various other podcasting apps.

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