- Associated Press - Wednesday, January 18, 2017

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Democrats will again head just two Texas Senate committees, the same number that the minority party ran last session in 2015.

Republican Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick announced Wednesday that all committee assignments from two years ago will remain the same except one. Brenham Republican Lois Kolkhorst will now run Senate Administration, which had been headed by Sen. Kelly Hancock.

Hancock, a Republican from North Richland Hills, will still run the Business and Commerce Committee, though.

Two years ago, Patrick broke with tradition and tapped just two Democrats for Senate leadership positions, further limiting the outnumbered party’s power.

He did the same this session, choosing Houston Democrat John Whitmire to remain as longtime head of the Criminal Justice Committee and Brownsville Democratic Sen. Eddie Lucio to lead the Intergovernmental Relations Committee.

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