1:30 p.m.

 

The election for House speaker took place shortly after the Texas House of Representatives convened at noon today. Rep. Joe Straus won the election by a tally of 132 yeas, 15 nays, and 2 present not voting. (One House member was absent.) The unofficial record vote can be viewed here.

 

The Senate also convened at noon. Sen. Steve Ogden, who will serve as President Pro Tempore of the Senate, commented on public education during his remarks to the Senate. He noted that he believes the state budget cannot be balanced without cuts to Articles II (health care) and III (public and higher education) of the budget. Ogden, as chair of the Senate Finance Committee in 2009, was one of the chief architects of the appropriations bill, and is expected to serve that role again this session.