In Texas House, a Symbolic Plea for Road Funding

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AUSTIN, Texas -- A top House Republican has pleaded with his colleagues to raise by $15 the state's annual car registration fees - despite stiff opposition from fellow conservatives and Gov. Rick Perry.

Rep. Drew Darby of San Angelo's impassioned call was purely symbolic, though. After more than an hour of discussion on the House floor late Thursday, he pulled his own bill down without a vote.

The failed measure sought to raise to $65.75 the cost of registering most vehicles and motorcycles in Texas.

Supporters said it was necessary to help cover years of much-need maintenance the state has failed to do on its roads.

But many conservatives viewed the measure as a tax increase and firmly opposed it. And Perry said he won't endorse a budget that includes new transportation fees.