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Texas News Minute

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Medical marijuana advocates are playing up support from non-traditional sources to push longshot legislation in Texas. Conservative Christian mothers of autistic children and military veterans suffering post-traumatic stress disorder rallied outside the state Capitol on Tuesday, entreating the Legislature to advance two bills legalizing medicinal cannabis. Texas has long been suspicious of easing pot laws, but both groups said the plant could curb symptoms associated with autism and PTSD.

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - The Texas Senate has authorized a late push in the Republican-controlled Legislature to ban genital mutilation in the country's largest conservative state. Republican Sen. Jane Nelson is sponsoring the measure, which has been co-signed by the other seven women in the state Senate. The deadline to file new bills has passed, but the Senate voted Tuesday to authorize the new bill and refer it to the powerful State Affairs Committee. The legislative session ends May 29.

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - The Texas Senate has approved a bill making abusing a dead body a felony punishable by at least six months in jail. Under current law, abuse of a corpse is a state misdemeanor and mandates up to a year in jail and a maximum $4,000 fine. Republican Sen. Brian Birdwell's proposal would make it a felony with a minimum penalty of six months behind bars and up to $10,000 in fines.

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - The anniversary of five Dallas police officers killed during a downtown shooting last summer would be commemorated as "Fallen Law Enforcement Officer Day" under a bill tentatively approved by the House. The measure approved Tuesday would designate July 7 as a day to honor officers in Texas killed in the line of duty. Law enforcement groups say nearly 1,900 officers in Texas history have died on the job.

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