Texas

News, policy discussions, and major events happening in or related to Texas, told from an Austin perspective

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From Texas Standard:

Texas politicians were quick to send out tweets and press releases reacting to the Supreme Court's decision Monday, ruling 5-3 that a 2013 Texas law restricting abortion procedures placed an “undue burden” on people who seek care. The social media flurry broke down predictably along party lines. 


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From Texas Standard:

As the population of Texas grows, so changes the demographics. According to the most recent data from the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services, the state's population of those age 60 and older is expected to triple by 2050.

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From Texas Standard:

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday that part of a 2013 Texas law restricting abortion procedures is "unconstitutional."

House Bill 2 required doctors who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles. Each clinic also had to meet the standards of hospital surgical facilities. The law also banned abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy and the abortion pill misoprostol.

The law garnered national attention during former Sen. Wendy Davis’s 11-hour filibuster in June 2013. The ensuing court case, Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, asked whether these new admitting privileges and ambulatory surgical center requirements on abortion providers within the state posed an “undue burden” on women.

 


Todd Wiseman / Texas Tribune

On its face, the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling on Texas' far-reaching abortion law seems clear: House Bill 2 is unconstitutional. But the implications might not be as straightforward. Here are five things you need to know to understand the landmark ruling. 

The Supreme Court has overturned a Texas law requiring clinics that provide abortions to have surgical facilities and doctors to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital. The law was predicted to close many clinics and further reduce availability of abortion in Texas; the court has ruled the law violated the Constitution.

A Year Later, Gay Marriage Debate Shifts in Texas

Jun 26, 2016
Tamir Kalifa

When Collin Acock became engaged to Shane Parsons in New York in August 2014, the Austin couple anticipated returning to New York to marry the next summer.

When they realized last year that the U.S. Supreme Court could legalize same-sex marriage nationwide in Obergefell v. Hodges, however, the "incredible possibility of us getting married at home in Texas came up," Acock said. They made plans to hold the ceremony immediately if that decision came down. On June 26, 2015, it did, and the couple promptly wed at the Travis County Courthouse.

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From Texas Standard:

Texans awoke this morning to news that the UK voted to exit the European Union. We caught up with one British-born Texan who's trying to figure out what the vote means for him.

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From Texas Standard:

Editor's note: This story discusses details that may not be suitable for children.

Fifteen years ago this week, Andrea Yates – a mom from a Houston suburb – methodically and systematically drowned all five of her children. The kids ranged in age from six months to seven years old.

Sarah Montgomery/KUT News

From Texas Standard:

The Supreme Court's 4-4 voting deadlock yesterday over President Barack Obama's executive order on immigration means the appeals court ruling stays – that is, the hold continues on the administration's order to shield millions of immigrants without U.S. documentation from deportation. It's as if, South Texas College of Law professor Charles "Rocky" Rhodes says, the Supreme Court never took up the issue at all.

Alexa Ura / Texas Tribune

Texas universities can deny free tuition to veterans who gained state residency only after enlisting in the military, a federal appeals court ruled Thursday — a decision that could ease some, but not all, concerns about a prominent benefit program’s spiraling costs.

James Gathany/CDC

States that are home to the aedes agypti mosquito have been keeping tabs on confirmed cases of the Zika virus, which can cause severe birth defects in unborn children.

So far, states have reported primarily travel-related cases and just a few that were sexually transmitted.


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From Texas Standard:

The court upheld an affirmative action program at the University of Texas at Austin, ending a legal battle that started in 2008.

In Fisher v. the University of Texas, Abigail Fisher, a white student, sued the university for using race as a factor in college admissions. The decision sets a national precedent, at least for the time being.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr./KUT News

The Supreme Court wasn't the only active place on Capitol Hill this morning. When the show aired Thursday morning, House Democrats were just over 22 hours into their sit-in on the House floor. The protest started Wednesday around 11:30 a.m. when GOP leaders refused to vote on two pieces of gun legislation.

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From Texas Standard:

The Supreme Court tied Thursday morning in a ruling on the legality of President Barack Obama’s immigration program.

Lexey Swall via Texas Tribune

From the Texas Tribune: Effectively dealing a final blow to President Obama’s controversial executive immigration order, the U.S. Supreme Court announced Thursday that it had failed to produce a majority opinion on the policy — meaning that the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals’ November 2015 decision rejecting the policy will stand.

In a 4-3 decision, the Supreme Court of the United States has upheld the University of Texas' affirmative action program.

"The race-conscious admissions program in use at the time of petitioner's application is lawful under the Equal Protection Clause," the court held.

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From Texas Standard:

When it comes to kids and their well-being, Texas isn't doing a very good job. In fact, the state ranks very close to the bottom of the list – at 43.

That ranking comes from the latest "Kids Count" study by the Annie E. Casey Foundation and the Texas-based Center for Public Policy Priorities, which looked at areas like education rankings and the number of children without health insurance.

 


Flickr/Gage Skidmore (CC BY-SA 2.0)

From Texas Standard:

Around this time last year, it appeared that Texas would play an outsized role in the 2016 race for the White House. A Texas senator was in the running, as well as a scion of a Texas political dynasty, a former business executive with Austin roots, the libertarian-leaning son of a longtime Texas congressman, and the longest-serving Texas governor in state history.

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From Texas Standard:

This morning, while most of us were sleeping, something happened in the state that might mean the difference between life and death for you or someone you love.

Much has been said and written about the opioid epidemic in the U.S. Of the 25 cities with the highest rate of opioid abuse, four are in Texas –Texarkana, Amarillo, Odessa and Longview. And over the past 15 years, opioid overdoses have risen 80 percent.

A drug called naloxone can help prevent many, if not most, deaths from overdoses in the event of an emergency, but the drug is highly regulated and available only with a doctor’s prescription.

 


Allyson Michele/Texas Standard

From Texas Standard:

This Thursday citizens of the United Kingdom will be deciding in a referendum whether the nation stay as a member of European Union. Many say that opinions have shifted since the UK first joined the EU back in 1973.

Those who want the change cite a need to distance itself from an organization that is now seen as an ineffective central bureaucracy – one that’s costing a pretty penny.

 


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