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Michael Stravato, via Texas Tribune

Starting this morning, Texas lawmakers will spend two days discussing the state’s Medicaid program. On the docket is a look at services and ways to cut costs, but there's a big question looming in the discussion of whether a big chunk of that Medicaid money will even be there next year.

Ted Cruz and Bernie Sanders won the Wisconsin primaries Tuesday night, an important step for both candidates as they look to stop their leading rivals and close their delegate gaps.

For the Republican Texas senator, he's on pace for a nearly double-digit win over Donald Trump, increasing the likelihood of a contested Republican convention this July in Cleveland.

There's a lot on the line for both parties in Tuesday's Wisconsin contest. For Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, the state is a prime chance to stop Donald Trump and complicate the GOP front-runner's path to the nomination. For Bernie Sanders, a win over Hillary Clinton helps close his delegate deficit and gives the Vermont senator new momentum heading into the next stretch of the primary calendar.

Calafellvalo via Flickr

Believe it or not, Texas is not among a short list of states that prohibits fetal tissue research. Advocates and researchers say that’s a good thing, because Texas is among a list of states that would be affected if the Zika virus makes it into the U.S. mosquito population. 


Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon for KUT News

A simple label-change from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration could have a sweeping impact on access to medication abortions in Texas. The federal agency announced on Wednesday it’s updating how the pill — not an emergency contraceptive like Plan B, but a medication taken to induce abortions — should be administered.


Jorge Sanhueza Lyon/KUT

Despite the excitement and wall-to-wall media coverage of this year’s presidential nominating contests, Texas still had one of the lowest voter participation rates during this year’s primaries – about 21 percent. 

Some Texans are trying to fix this problem by innovating the way we administer elections here in the Lone Star State.

Patrick Svitek/Texas Tribune

Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry may have stumped for Ted Cruz for president but there's no record he voted in this year's Republican primary in Texas. A spokesman for Perry suggested his ballot may have been lost in the mail.

Photo by Shelby Tauber/Marjorie Kamys Cotera

From the Texas Tribune: Ted Cruz is moving further than ever away from his pledge to support Donald Trump if he is the Republican presidential nominee as the Texas senator combats a series of personal attacks from the billionaire and his supporters.

"I don't make a habit out of supporting people who attack my wife and attack my family, and Donald Trump is not going to be the Republican nominee," Cruz told reporters Friday afternoon, his clearest suggestion yet that he could not back the billionaire if he is the GOP's standard-bearer in the general election. 

Screenshot via YouTube

This week on The Ticket 2016: While we're waiting for the parties to figure out who will be the nominees, the Texas Tribune's Jay Root and KUT's Ben Philpott will talk about the ads and media strategy that have helped shape the campaigns so far. 

Bernie Sanders and Ted Cruz each notched victories in Tuesday's Western contests, but Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump's big wins in Arizona still mean their overall delegate lead won't change much.

On the Democratic side, Sanders won big victories in the Utah and Idaho caucuses, but the much smaller prizes could end up netting him roughly the same number of delegates Clinton will get from her Arizona win.

Just after President Obama and I concluded our interview — and after the microphones and cameras clicked off — he added a thought.

Senate Republicans' vow not to consider the nomination of Judge Merrick Garland to the U.S. Supreme Court, he said, could have profound consequences for the high court and the justices themselves.

Gage Skidmore via Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

This week on The Ticket 2016: The Texas Tribune's Jay Root and KUT's Ben Philpott will try to explain what could happen at this summer's Republican National Convention if none of the candidates have enough delegates to become the nominee. 

The GOP presidential field dropped by one candidate on Tuesday night, but Republicans are still no closer to uniting behind a nominee.

Democrats, however, did get more clarity as Hillary Clinton racked up more wins over Bernie Sanders, extending her delegate lead and complicating the Vermont senator's nomination calculation.

Jamie Lovegrove/Texas Tribune

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott repudiated President Barack Obama’s recent criticisms of the state’s voter laws on Monday, arguing that Texas must remain vigilant against voter fraud.


Todd Wiseman/Texas Tribune

From the Texas Tribune:

At a packed Travis County GOP executive committee meeting Tuesday night, it took less than a minute for someone to acknowledge the elephant not in the room.

“Give us wisdom to deal with the situation that we’re in,” Peggy Bower prayed during the opening invocation, to a chorus of quiet amens. “We pray this can be used as a lesson to everyone about how important it is to stay informed.”

The results from Tuesday's four primary and caucus states are in: three wins for Trump, one each for Clinton and Cruz, and one surprising, narrow victory for Sanders.

Bernie Sanders' tight win over Hillary Clinton in Michigan is the biggest news out of Tuesday night's presidential nomination races. Though Clinton had led consistently in recent polls, Sanders won by less than 2 percentage points with 99 percent of precincts reporting.

Miguel Guitierrez Jr./KUT

From the Texas Tribune: Texas health officials have asked a prominent academic journal to take the state's name off a published finding that Texas women lost access to health care services after lawmakers kicked Planned Parenthood out of a family planning program.

In their seventh debate, this time in Flint, Mich., Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders agreed on the root causes of that city's drinking water crisis. They both called for a massive federal intervention and investigation of the lead poisoning there and urged that the state's Republican governor, Rick Snyder, either resign or be recalled.

But the two Democratic candidates also clashed over the role of trade deals in the deterioration of Michigan's economy, the usefulness of the Export-Import Bank and the state of manufacturing in America generally.

Ted Cruz and Donald Trump split victories on Saturday, with the Texas senator posting big wins in the Kansas and Maine GOP caucuses and the real estate mogul winning the Kentucky caucuses and Louisiana primary.

In the Democratic race, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders notched victories in the Kansas and Nebraska caucuses, while former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton won the Louisiana primary.

The Republicans: Cruz emerges as leading anti-Trump candidate

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez for KUT News

This week on The Ticket: KUT’s Ben Philpott and the Texas Tribune’s Jay Root bring you a mini-episode with our takes on the March 1 Super Tuesday elections. We’ll also hear from Matt Katz of WNYC’s the Christie Tracker podcast on the strange week of Chris Christie: Trump Endorser.


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