Politics

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Miguel Guitierrez Jr./KUT

On Wednesday, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments for Whole Women’s Health v. Hellerstedt. The case is a challenge to a controversial Texas law proponents say makes abortions safer in the state. It could set new limits for what kind of regulations state lawmakers can impose on abortion providers.


Hillary Clinton won the South Carolina Democratic primary on Saturday, notching a decisive win in a state where she suffered a devastating loss just eight years ago.

The Associated Press called the race for the former secretary of state over rival Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders just seconds after the polls closed at 7 p.m. ET. With all precincts reporting, Clinton beat Sanders by nearly 50 points, winning 73.5 percent to 26 percent.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. for KUT News

Thousands attended a somewhat-impromptu campaign stop at Circuit of the Americas in Austin Saturday to see Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, who is running for the Democratic presidential nomination.

The Sanders campaign announced Thursday afternoon that they were holding a rally in Texas this weekend. They'd also make a campaign stop in Dallas Saturday afternoon. For many in the crowd, seeing Sanders in Austin was a big surprise.


Reuters/Mike Stone

This week on The Ticket 2016: The Texas Tribune's Jay Root and KUT's Ben Philpott talk with national Hispanic activist, and former Jeb Bush supporter, Temo Muniz about the Republican primary. Specifically, what do he and other conservative Hispanics do now that Bush is out of the race, and ideas like the mass-deportation of 12 million immigrants are being pushed by top candidates.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon for KUT News

This year’s presidential election is in full swing, and the state's voter ID law in full effect. But, believe it or not, there are no stats on how many legal voters are being kept from the polls because they don't have a photo ID. Nearly five years after the state’s law was passed, nobody seems to know how to come up with a number.


Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon for KUT News

Today is the last day of early voting in Texas. Democratic presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders are hoping to engage Latino voters ahead of the state’s March 1 primary.

There are some big differences between the campaigns, though.


Ahead of Thursday's Republican debate, pundits agreed that someone — and Marco Rubio in particular — needed to attack Trump.

Tim Faust

T-shirts give us the chance to show the world who our favorite sports teams are, what amusement park rides we’ve survived, and now, whether we believe that U.S. Senator and GOP Presidential primary candidate Ted Cruz was the Zodiac Killer. 

Kevin Opp

Democrats running for the nomination to be Travis County Sheriff are in their final days of campaigning before the March 1 primary, and the contenders are pushing hard to stand out to voters.


Donald Trump has won the Nevada Republican caucuses, giving the billionaire his third victory in two weeks and a huge surge of momentum heading into Super Tuesday.

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio held a narrow but decisive lead for second place over Texas Sen. Ted Cruz. With all caucus votes in, Rubio had 23.9 percent to Cruz's 21.4 percent, according to the Associated Press.

But it was Trump who towered above his two top rivals, nearly doubling the support of his nearest competitor with 45.9 percent of the vote.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon for KUT News

Travis County Commissioners met in a rare Sunday session yesterday to formalize a fix for early voting hours at some Austin polling places. Five early voting locations, four of them east of I-35, have not been open the standard 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. hours. The Howson, Dan Ruiz and Carver Branch Libraries – along with Parque Zaragoza Recreation Center and the Austin Area Urban League – had their hours reduced due to city budget cuts several years ago.

Photo illustration by Todd Wiseman/TexasTribune

Presidential candidates have primaries in two more states this week before turning their full attention to the hundreds of delegates up for grabs on the March 1 Super Tuesday primaries, but what's at stake in the Texas primaries?

Republicans head to Nevada tomorrow. Then, their thoughts and money turn to the South.

Texas Sen.Ted Cruz had hoped South Carolina would be the state that cemented his place as a front-runner after winning the Iowa caucuses.

Donald Trump has won the South Carolina primary, while Florida Sen. Marco Rubio appears to have edged out Texas Sen. Ted Cruz for second place.

"There's nothing easy about running for president, I can tell you. It's tough, it's nasty, it's mean, it's vicious, it's beautiful," Trump declared to his supporters at his victory rally in Spartanburg, S.C.

Trump took 32.5 percent of the vote, while Rubio and Cruz were nearly even with 22.5 percent and 22.3 percent, respectively.

Hillary Clinton will win the Nevada Democratic caucuses, the Associated Press is reporting.

With 84 percent of the precincts reporting, Clinton has 52.5 percent of the vote, compared to Sen. Bernie Sanders' 47.5 percent.

"Tens of thousands of men and women with kids to raise, bills to pay, and dreams that won't die — this is your campaign," she told a crowd at Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas. "And it is a campaign to break down every barrier that holds you back."

Bob Daemmrich for the Texas Tribune

The next Texas legislative session is almost a year away, but Senate Republicans are already zeroing in on proposals to bolster legal protections for religious opponents of same-sex marriage after its legalization by the U.S. Supreme Court last year.

At a hearing of the Senate State Affairs Committee on Wednesday, some Republicans appeared to endorse a piecemeal approach to passing legislation shielding religious objectors to same-sex marriage instead of pushing for more comprehensive state constitutional amendments like Indiana’s embattled “religious freedom” law


Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon for KUT News

Seven Democrats are vying for a seat that will be vacated next year by retiring Democratic State Rep. Elliott Naishtat, who has represented Central Austin for more than two decades.

All seven candidates running for the HD 49 are progressive Democrats in Austin. For the most part there are not a lot of stark differences among them. In fact, six of the seven candidates have a legal background; almost all are running for public office for the first time; and most of the candidates have some experience working or advocating at the Texas Legislature.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon/KUT

Texans will start casting their votes in this year’s primary elections today.

Early voting starts today and continues until Feb. 26 and, aside from weighing in on this year’s race for the White House, registered Republican and Democratic voters in Texas have plenty of races to consider.


wikimedia commons

For Republican Texas officeholders regularly straining against the leash of a strong federal government, Antonin Scalia has been a reliable and predictable conservative friend on the nation's highest court.

They counted on him over and over in winning and losing cases that involved redistricting, environmental regulation, same-sex marriage, college admissions — even the elevation of a Texas governor to the White House.

Photo courtesy of Kainaz Amaria/NPR

U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Antonin Scalia was found dead at a ranch near Marfa, Texas, while on a hunting trip. The 79-year-old Scalia was visiting the Cibolo Creek Ranch when he passed away in his sleep. Scalia had arrived at the ranch on Friday.

President Barack Obama said in remarks Saturday night that he will nominate a successor to Scalia with less than a year to go in his presidency.

This week on The Ticket 2016: The Texas Tribune's Jay Root and KUT's Ben Philpott get you ready for the South Carolina primary by explaining who's voting, who's still running and what could happen on Primary night for both parties. And we'll get an update on what's happening in Texas as we get closer to Super Tuesday – with Democratic strategist Colin Strother.


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