A bipartisan group to cut congressional gridlock drew 81 Democratic and Republican lawmakers Thursday, including U.S. Rep. Joaquín Castro, the only Texan to take part. FULL STORY

Thomas Perez, the top civil rights attorney in the Department of Justice, was confirmed by the Senate to take over the post of Secretary of Labor in President Barack Obama’s cabinet. Perez, Obama’s only Latino Cabinet member, was confirmed on a vote of 54-46. FULL STORY

Speaking last week at a conference on dropout prevention a few miles from his new Congressional office here, Representative Joaquin Castro, Democrat of San Antonio, cracked a self-deprecating joke. “In case you’re wondering,” he said, “you’re not talking to the mayor of San Antonio.” He may need new material. Mr. Castro, 38, is accustomed to being mistaken for his one-minute-older identical twin, Julián Castro, a rising political star who last summer became the first Latino to deliver a keynote address at the Democratic National Convention. In the two months since Mr. Castro, a lawyer and former state legislator, was sworn into Congress, he has been the twin receiving the larger share of attention. FULL STORY

As factions of the GOP continue to move further to the right, the historically and reliably red state of Texas may soon be purple, then blue, San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro and his twin brother, Rep. Joaquin Castro, D-Texas, predicted today on "Face the Nation." FULL STORY

On the list of surrogates working the message in Florida today, there’s a notable name: Joaquin Castro. He’s a Texas state legislator currently running for the House of Representatives and the twin brother of San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro, who will deliver the keynote address at the Democratic National Convention. FULL STORY

These political twins from San Antonio are taking a big leap onto the national stage this year, Joaquin, a state representative, is the prohibitive favorite to win the congressional seat being vacated by Rep. Charlie Gonzalez. FULL STORY

“The work that I`ve done in higher education is to me the issue that I`ve been most passionate about, trying to get more students to college and getting them to graduate,” Castro said. He hopes to work with a second Obama administration on job creation and access to health care, “particularly because we`re in a state where you have the highest percentage of uninsured people,” Castro said. FULL STORY

Mayor Julián Castro and state Rep. Joaquín Castro experienced the rock star treatment as they prepared to leave for the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., where the mayor will be the keynote speaker. In a crowded auditorium at the St. Paul Community Center on the West Side, people clamored to shake the hand, get the autograph and pose for pictures. They waved “Team Castro” posters and “Don`t mess with Castro” signs, and held mobile phones and cameras in the air, trying to take pictures and video. FULL STORY