NORTH TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) - In this week's episode of Eye on Politics, Jack Fink talks to former Gov. Rick Perry about his support for legalizing mobile sports betting. He's also joined by two North Texas members of Congress who weigh in on the shift in power in the U.S. House.
Every week, CBS 11 political reporter Jack Fink breaks down some of the biggest political stories grabbing headlines in North Texas and beyond. Watch the latest episode of Eye on Politics in the video player above and stream new episodes live every Thursday and Friday at 7 p.m. on CBS News DFW.
Mobile sports betting in Texas
State lawmakers are gearing up for their next legislative session starting in January. Sports teams and betting platforms are hoping a new push will increase their chances of legalizing mobile sports betting in Texas. The group called the Texas Sports Betting Alliance has hired a powerful spokesman: former Texas Governor Rick Perry.
A bill to legalize mobile or online sports betting is being developed for the upcoming legislative session.
You can't watch sports on TV without seeing multiple ads by the sports betting platforms. But while you can bet on a game or match right on your phone in 35 states, Texas is not one of them.
Perry, who said he once opposed the idea, now supports it in the Lone Star State.
Watch the video in the player below to hear more about the issue.
Protections for same-sex marriage
Some lawmakers in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives are hoping to pass bipartisan legislation that would recognize same-sex marriage and repeal the Defense of Marriage Act, which only recognizes marriage between a man and a woman.
Democrats in the U.S. House introduced legislation earlier this year after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v Wade.
In his concurring opinion, Justice Clarence Thomas said the nation's highest court should also reconsider its ruling granting same sex couples a nationwide right to marry.
While Democrats passed their bill in the House with Republican support, a majority of the U.S. Senate gave its initial support, but made some changes to the legislation.
The bill doesn't require states to grant a marriage license to same sex couples but does require states to recognize those marriages from other states.
The legislation also maintains religious freedoms that wouldn't force nonprofit organizations to provide services for marriage celebrations and doesn't deny the tax-exempt status of churches and universities if they won't recognize gay marriage.
Supporters in Congress want to pass the measure in the next few weeks while the House remains under a Democratic majority.
The U.S. Senate will vote on the measure and then it will head back to the House.
Watch the video in the player below to hear from a Plano couple hoping the bill will pass.
North Texas Congressmen react to shift in balance of power
Republicans have regained the majority for the new session of Congress starting in early January. Jack spoke with two members from North Texas from both sides of the aisle to hear how they're 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 securing the border. But he anticipates that even with his party in power, his goals will be difficult:
"We have divided government. But at least again now we have a seat at the table."
Democratic Congressman Marc Veasey of the 33rd Congressional District said he would love if both sides could come together to work on border security.
"I've been a very strong proponent of making sure we enhance our border security by spending our dollars smartly," he said.
Some of the border security ideas he named include investing in technology to help scan trucks crossing for possible harbored 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 in power again.
Meanwhile, Fallon said that the Democrats in the House and President Joe Biden have been unwilling to compromise.
"They didn't want to talk, negotiate, chat, anything," he said. "I don't think that's the proper way to govern for the American people."
Looking ahead to 2024, both Congressmen said they would welcome another presidential run from Joe Biden, albeit for different reasons.
"He's done a great job," Veasey said. "I think he has an amazing vision for America."
Fallon, meanwhile, thinks a Biden run could help his 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 both Congressmen Veasey and Fallon, watch the full episode of Eye on Politics in the video player at the top of this page.
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