Texas Standard For December 8, 2020

He is set to become, if not a household name, a statewide presence in politics: just who is Dade Phelan and why should everyday Texans care? We’ll explain. And: By court order, the Trump administration says it has restored the deferred deportation program called DACA. But recipients remain fearful of its future. Also: The change in Texas law that left some Texas cities, hard hit by the pandemic with fewer hospitals than they used to have. Plus: Questions raised about why so many C-sections concentrated at certain Texas hospitals? Those stories and more today on the Texas Standard:

By Texas StandardDecember 8, 2020 7:14 am

Here’s what’s coming up on Texas Standard for Tuesday, December 8, 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.

Texas Suing States Over Voting

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has filed a lawsuit against Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin in the United States Supreme Court. In it, he claims the four states “exploited the COVID-19 pandemic to justify ignoring federal and state election laws,” thus “skewing the results of the 2020 General Election.” Steve Vladeck, the Charles Alan Wright Chair in Federal Courts at the University of Texas School of Law, talks to the Standard.

DACA Applications

For the first time since 2017, new Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals applicants could be able to apply for the Obama-era program after a federal judge ordered the Trump administration to fully restore DACA. Geoffrey Hoffman with the University of Houston Law Center’s Immigration Clinic Director joins us with more.

Hospital Mergers

Between them, Abilene and San Angelo used to have four hospitals. Now, a set of mergers has left only one in each town. The consolidations were made easier by a bill the Texas Legislature passed last year that more or less flew under the radar, despite some unusual provisions. The Texas Standard’s Michael Marks has more.

Controversy over Birthing Procedures at Texas Border Hospitals

A new investigative report from the San Antonio Express News reveals that some hospitals in Texas, especially along the Mexico border, are overusing cesarean sections in their birthing procedures. Marina Starleaf Riker has been reporting on this for the Express News and talks to the Standard.

Bug Bites

 Homeless Hotel

In North Texas, a significant housing and homelessness crisis existed even before COVID-19 hit. Now, the virus has presented an unexpected opportunity. In Dallas, KERA’s Bret Jaspers reports on how the city and county are using federal COVID relief money to also address long-term homelessness.

Dade Phelan Profile

State Rep. Dade Phelan, a Republican from Beaumont, has effectively locked up the race to become the next Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives. Houston Public Media reporter Andrew Schneider spoke with a number of Phelan’s current and former colleagues and has this profile.

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

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