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Articles written by Paul J. Weber

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'We are no less American': Deaths pile up on Texas border

RIO GRANDE CITY, Texas (AP) — When labor pains signaled that Clarissa Muñoz was at last going to be a mom, she jumped in a car and headed two hours down the Texas border into one of the nation's most dire coronavirus hot spots. She went first to... Full story

 

'We don't seem to learn': Beirut explosion echoes US tragedy

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The staggering videos from the Lebanese capital are grimly familiar to Tommy Muska thousands of miles away in Texas: a towering blast, a thundering explosion and shock waves demolishing buildings with horrifying speed. It is wh... Full story

 

Some states hit pause, others press on amid spike in virus

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Utah and Oregon put any further reopening of their economies on hold amid a spike in coronavirus cases, but there was no turning back Friday in such states as Texas, Arkansas and Arizona despite flashing warning signs there,...

 

Tensions rise as Texas governor readies to lift more rules

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Two weeks into the reopening of Texas, coronavirus cases are climbing. New outbreaks still crop up. And at Guero's Taco Bar in Austin, which offers the occasional celebrity sighting, a log of every diner and where they sat is...

 

Judge signals easing Texas mail-in voting rules amid virus

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A judge Wednesday moved toward lifting Texas' restrictions on voting by mail, which President Donald Trump has taken a hard line against even as states controlled by Republicans make it more widely available during the...

 

Democrats' early 2020 blitz to strike in Texas flops

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — If Texas is going to be competitive in 2020, the first race wasn't. Democrats went all-in on a legislative runoff in the booming Houston suburbs, drumming up endorsements from Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren and putting $1...

 

Evacuation order lifted as huge Texas plant fire 'contained'

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Officials lifted evacuation orders Friday for around 50,000 people on the Texas Gulf Coast, determining a massive fire was finally under control at a chemical plant rocked by two major explosions two days earlier. "We are in a...

 

Dallas shooting victim was a 'big personality, nice person'

DALLAS (AP) — Botham Jean organized church mission trips. He installed Skype for elderly parents who missed their kids. One time he met a stranger who shared his mom’s birthday, so the bighearted 6-foot-1 choir singer got the woman a cake. He...

 

West Texas shooting brings 2 intertwined cities even closer

ODESSA, Texas (AP) — A Texas state trooper was the first to be shot. He pulled over Seth Aaron Ator for failing to signal a left turn, not knowing that Ator had just lost his job or that he was carrying an AR-style rifle. From there, Ator sped...

 

Texas shooter got gun at private sale; denied in 2014 check

ODESSA, Texas (AP) — The gunman in a West Texas rampage that left seven dead obtained his AR-style rifle through a private sale, allowing him to evade a federal background check that blocked him from getting a gun in 2014 due to a "mental health...

 

FBI: West Texas gunman 'was on a long spiral of going down'

ODESSA, Texas (AP) — The gunman in a West Texas rampage "was on a long spiral of going down" and had been fired from his oil services job the morning he killed seven people, calling 911 both before and after the shooting began, authorities said...

 

Governor brings big tech to the table after El Paso attack

DALLAS (AP) — Texas Gov. Greg Abbott called Monday for the help of big tech platforms in the wake of an El Paso mass shooting that authorities say was carried out by a gunman who posted a racist screed online before killing 22 people at a Walmart....

 

APNewsBreak: Texas says DNA technology jeopardizes cases

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — With a name that sounds like futuristic fiction, Rapid DNA machines roughly the size of an office printer have helped solve rape cases in Kentucky, identified California wildfire victims and verified family connections of...

 
 By Paul J. Weber    Regional    May 24, 2019

Tensions flare in Texas Capitol over new Sandra Bland video

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas authorities on Friday denied withholding a cellphone video of Sandra Bland's confrontational traffic stop, responding to a Democratic legislator's heated questions about why the 39-second clip never publicly surfaced unti...

 

Sandra Bland's own video of 2015 Texas traffic stop surfaces

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Cellphone video recorded by Sandra Bland, a black woman found dead in a Texas jail following a confrontational 2015 traffic stop, shows for the first time her perspective as a white state trooper draws his stun gun and points...

 

Texas' high court keeps execution drug supplier secret

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A supplier of Texas' execution drugs can remain secret under a court ruling Friday that upheld risks of "physical harm" to the pharmacy, ending what state officials called a threat to the entire U.S. death penalty system. The...

 

Suddenly, cost-cutting states turn friendly to teachers

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Schoolteacher raises of $5,000 are on the table in Texas — a proposed pay hike that ranks among the biggest in the U.S. since a wave of teacher unrest began last year. But protests aren't why the money is suddenly available....

 

Texas senator defends bill empowering husband's office

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The wife of Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said Tuesday that a bill she filed that would change state securities law "has literally nothing to do" with her husband facing criminal charges of defrauding investors, even as exp...

 

Former Obama housing chief Julian Castro joins 2020 campaign

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — Assailing President Donald Trump for "a crisis of leadership," former Obama Cabinet member Julian Castro joined the 2020 presidential race Saturday as the rush of Democrats making early moves to challenge the incumbent...

 

APNewsBreak: Julian Castro moves toward 2020 White House run

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — Former Obama housing chief Julian Castro says he's taking a step toward a possible White House campaign in 2020 by forming a presidential exploratory committee. The Texas Democrat tells The Associated Press that he will announce...

 

He bashes Trump in Texas, but GOP is desperate to keep him

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — Few Republicans in Congress have publicly criticized President Donald Trump like Will Hurd of Texas, who didn't vote for him in 2016 and won't say if he will in 2020. But next week on Election Day, Hurd could end up helping save...

 

Secretary Perry alma mater says he didn't tilt nuke lab bid

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas A&M University leaders said Tuesday that Energy Secretary Rick Perry wasn't involved in his alma mater getting a $2.5 billion nuclear weapons lab contract at the birthplace of the atomic bomb, which is changing...

 

Texas suburb ends contract with immigrant detention center

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A conservative Texas suburb voted Tuesday to sever ties with a 500-bed immigration detention center that activists say is currently housing some mothers who don't know the whereabouts of their children. The outcome is a...

 

Texas abortion clinics sue to undo laws dating back decades

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas abortion providers who won a landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling in 2016 that blocked a new wave of anti-abortion efforts are now using that decision to try to undo laws on the books for decades in a lawsuit filed...

 

Texas governor's plan after Santa Fe shooting meets pushback

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott says gun rights are safe on his watch amid pushback to some of his safety proposals after a high school shooting that left 10 people dead. Abbott headlined the Texas GOP Convention in San...

 

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