Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

With Bulldozers Around the Corner, East Austin Cul-de-Sac Strives to Preserve History

Danny Fowler stands in the middle of his driveway holding a vase full of red flowers. He is taking them to his neighbor, who lives just across the street, over the crest of the steep hill that cuts this East Austin cul-de-sac in two. The street, which begins as E.M. Franklin Avenue before morphing into Grant Street, makes up Ebony Acres, a historically black neighborhood.

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Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Intent on rolling back Obama-era regulations, Republican lawmakers in Washington have placed an EPA rule enacted in the wake of the fertilizer explosion plant in West, Texas, on the chopping block.

Updated at 3:20 p.m. ET

President Trump started the day by blasting a Democratic senator who revealed criticism of Trump from his nominee to the Supreme Court on Wednesday.

Judge Neil Gorsuch told Connecticut Sen. Richard Blumenthal that he found President Trump's recent attacks on judges to be "demoralizing" and "disheartening." Gorsuch made the comments during a private meeting, and a member of the Supreme Court nomination team escorting Gorsuch through the get-acquainted meetings also confirmed the remarks to NPR's Tamara Keith.

The Senate has confirmed President Trump's nominee Jeff Sessions to be the next attorney general, bringing an end to a bitter confirmation fight that has dredged up past accusations of racism against the Alabama senator.

The vote was largely along party lines, 52-47, with only centrist Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia voting yes. Sessions himself voted "present" on his own nomination.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

President Donald Trump is butting heads with the tech industry over his recent actions on immigration. Nearly 100 tech CEOs, including some of the biggest players in Silicon Valley, signed an open letter saying the president’s policies threaten their ability to recruit, hire and retain some of the world’s best employees. How could the president’s policies affect Austin’s tech industry?

Pedro Vásquez Colmenares/Flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0)

From Texas Standard:

Mexico’s election season is right around the corner and two candidates are already leading in the polls. It looks likely that leftist candidate Andrés Manuel López Obrador of Mexico’s MORENA party and conservative candidate Margarita Zavala Gómez del Campo of PAN will face off in July 2018.

MellieRene4/Flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0)

From Texas Standard:

When Texas police are involved in a shooting – whether they shot the gun or not – they are mandated to report it to the attorney general’s office. But the legislator who sponsored the 2015 law acknowledges that it has no teeth. And one report has found that not all police departments are following the rules.

In August 1966, a student and former Marine ascended to the top of the tower that housed the University of Texas' main library and began shooting at people below. He killed 14 people on the campus and wounded 31 more. Hours earlier, Charles Whitman had killed his wife and mother in their homes. He was eventually shot to death by police. A 15th victim died in 2001, from injuries sustained in the attack.

Marjorie Kamys Cotera / Texas Tribune

The Republican-controlled Texas Senate gave its final stamp of approval on Wednesday to a bill that would gut funding from local and state entities that don’t enforce immigration laws.

Air Force One (CC BY 2.0)

From Texas Standard:

We’re only a few weeks into the Trump administration and the president has come out swinging when it comes to both illegal and legal immigration. He’s signed executive orders – one that paves the way for a wall along the United States-Mexico border and another that placed a travel ban on immigrants from certain countries.

In line with Trump’s restrictive policies on immigration into the country, two U.S. senators filed a bill Tuesday that seeks to reduce immigration further.

The words were those of Coretta Scott King, widow of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

But they resulted in a rarely invoked Senate rule being used to formally silence Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass.

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