Texas Standard for October 25, 2021

Two cases challenging Texas’ near total ban on abortions get put on the fast track by the U.S. Supreme Court. What happens next? Not since Bush v Gore has the Supreme Court moved with such speed as it has in two challenges to Texas’s new abortion law, known as SB 8. But for now, it remains in force in Texas. We’ll hear what the SCOTUS move means for the future of abortion in Texas and the rest of the nation. And: A plan to link Houston, Dallas, Austin and San Antonio by Amtrak – one with friends in very high places, including 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Also: The art of ladders and border barriers. Those stories and more today on the Texas Standard:

By Texas StandardOctober 25, 2021 9:30 am,

Here are the stories on Texas Standard for Monday, October 25, 2021.


The United States Supreme Court has agreed to review Texas’ near total abortion ban, but says it won’t directly consider the constitutionality of the law. So what will the court be looking at? For more on the announcement, we’re talking to Florida State University professor and reproductive law specialist Mary Ziegler.

Politics and the Texas Economy

Texas’ abortion ban is one of several state policies to have ripple effects in the business world. But calls to boycott Texas or pull business out of the state are nothing new. Now, Bloomberg News is reporting those boycotts might not be making that much of an economic difference. For more we’re joined by Shelly Hagan, a reporter at Bloomberg focused on the Texas economy.

Passenger Rail in Texas

Amtrak has long operated daily trains between Dallas and San Antonio. But the four-and-a half-hour ride easily turns into eight after boarding, stops and the like (and that’s not counting delays). The sluggish service has hardly helped generate enthusiasm for passenger rail in Texas. But under the Biden administration’s infrastructure bill, Amtrak has big plans for improvements along the Texas Triangle. William Vantuono, editor in chief of industry publication Railway Age, joins us with more.

Climate Conference

The 2021 United Nation Climate Change Conference kicks off next week, and organizers say the stakes have never been higher. The meeting is seen as one of the world’s last opportunities to reach goals laid out in the Paris Agreement, which seeks to keep world temperatures from rising more than 1.5 degrees Celsius over preindustrial levels. Matt Smith, lead oil analyst for the Americas at analytics firm Kpler and the Standard’s resident oil and gas expert, offers an overview.

The Sounds of Texas: A Brother and Sister’s Life after Prison

Military Spouse Employment Barriers

Many military service members get relocated to new bases every few years. That can cause headaches for military spouses with professional careers, because they may be forced to get relicensed before they can work in their new states. As Desiree Diorio reports for the American Homefront Project, some states are trying to address that.

‘Ladders and Walls’ Exhibition

The federal government has spent billions building barriers along the Mexican border. But for all that time and money, they’re not expensive to circumvent. Improvised ladders – makeshift tools from people crossing illegally – are not an uncommon sight near some walls. Now some of those ladders are part of an art installation by Scott Nicol, assistant professor of visual arts at South Texas College. We’ll speak to him about his new exhibit, “Ladders and Walls,” on view at Austin College in Sherman, Texas.

All this and Texas News Roundup, plus Social Media Editor Wells Dunbar with the talk of Texas.

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