Texas Standard For September 16, 2020

Despite less money and name recognition than the incumbent, some think MJ Hegar has a strong chance of making political history in November. Many political analysts think air force veteran and teacher MJ Hegar has the best chance of reclaiming a seat in the US Senate for Texas Democrats for the first time in two decades. And: What losing a newspaper means for a Texas town. Also: A teachers’ struggle to wear a Black Lives Matter mask at school. Plus: 80 million unrequested ballots sent to voters? A PolitiFact check of that claim from the president, and more today on the Texas Standard:

By Texas StandardSeptember 16, 2020 9:30 am

Here’s what’s coming up on Texas Standard for Wednesday, September 16, 2020. Listen on your Texas public radio station, or ask your smart speaker to play Texas Standard. We’ll have full posts for each story, including audio, a little later today.

MJ Heger on Her Senate Campaign

When MJ Hegar first came on the scene during her first campaign, against longtime incumbent Congressman John Carter, it was with a bang. A splashy ad that zeroed in on her military combat experience helped catapult her to within a few points of defeating Carter. That was 2018. Now she’s trying to dethrone Texas Sen. John Cornyn. But as of the last campaign reporting period that ended in June, the Democratic nominee’s campaign had less than $1 million in the bank compared to Cornyn’s $14.5 million. M.J. Hegar talks to the Standard.

What Losing a Newspaper Means for One North Texas City

The newspaper industry was already struggling before COVID-19. According to the Poynter Institute, more than 50 outlets have closed or merged due to the pandemic. One of them was a North Texas paper that was shuttered during this year’s economic downturn. KERA’s Miranda Suarez reports on the consequences for a community when it loses a news source.

Teacher Loses Job for BLM Mask

A San Antonio charter school teacher has lost her job after refusing to stop wearing a mask that says Black lives matter. Texas Public Radio’s Camille Phillips tells us what happened … and what parents think about it.

Texas Tribune Festival

For more than a decade, the Texas Tribune Festival has been a three-day, live Austin event featuring panels of politicians and policy makers. But the pandemic forced the festival to go virtual. Evan Smith, cofounder and CEO of the Texas Tribune, talks to the Standard about the festival’s different format this year and about the upcoming election.

Catherine Newman on How to be a Person

Dallas ISD Hot Spots

Many schools across Texas have gone the virtual route – at least for now – this fall. But some districts are struggling to get students who don’t have internet at home, online. In Dallas, school officials have spent months behind the scenes to make sure students without internet at home could connect using mobile, Wi-Fi hotspots.

PolitiFact: Unsolicited Ballots

President Donald Trump says that election officials are sending 80 million “unsolicited ballots” out across the country. Is that a fact? Madlin Mekelburg with PolitiFact Texas based at the Austin American-Statesman walks us through the facts.

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

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