Town Square

Understanding COVID vaccinations, Texas politics and early voting

Posted on · Having trouble keeping up with headlines in Texas politics? Experts explain the legislature’s third special session and early voting. Plus, in light of the passing of former Secretary of State Colin Powell, we discuss COVID complications and vaccines.

Politics

Texas lawmakers pass controversial new map for the U.S. House of Representatives

Posted on · While Democrats hold firm in their accusations of racial gerrymandering, Republicans passed a map reallocating Texas’ seats in the U.S. House. A court challenge is likely ahead.

Criminal Justice

Robert Durst sentenced to life in best friend’s murder

Posted on · He was convicted in Los Angeles Superior Court last month of first-degree murder for shooting Susan Berman point-blank in the back of the head at her home in December 2000. Prosecutors said Durst silenced Berman to prevent her from incriminating him in the reopened investigation of his wife’s 1982 disappearance in New York.

Energy & Environment

Illegal air pollution in Texas dropped more than 50% during the pandemic. Experts fear it’s an outlier

Posted on · A new report analyzing data gathered by the TECQ finds the drop stemmed largely from the pandemic-related downturn in the oil, gas, and petrochemical industries, and rising production in 2021 is already leading to a comparable rise in illegal pollution.

Criminal Justice

U.S. Department of Justice investigating abuse, mistreatment at Texas’ juvenile lockups

Posted on · The department says it’s looking into whether the Texas Juvenile Justice Department provides “reasonable protection from physical and sexual abuse by staff and other residents, excessive use of chemical restraints and excessive use of isolation.”