Has Texas made abortions too hard to get, Trump’s ‘wall’ talk sparks migrant rush on U.S.-Mexico border, and mortgage giants headed for crisis are some of the issues covered in our Border News Clips for Wednesday, March 2, 2016.


LEAD STORIES

Has Texas made abortions too hard to get?

CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR: Valerie Peterson paid no attention to the fiery debates in Texas over restrictive abortion laws. She isn’t a lawyer, politician, or activist. Instead, she is a woman and mother who wanted more than anything in the world to give birth to a healthy baby boy.

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Now or never: Trump’s ‘wall’ talk sparks migrant rush on U.S.-Mexico border

REUTERS: Gang violence and poverty have for years pushed Mexicans and Central Americans north to the United States, but recently a new driver has emerged: the anti-immigrant tone of leading Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. From the slums of Central America to close-knit migrant communities in U.S. cities, Trump’s rise to the front of the Republican pack has not gone unnoticed and is partly behind a spike in the numbers of migrants trying to enter the country, including children traveling without guardians.

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Trump’s Super Tuesday win sets off GOP alarm bells

POLITICO: Donald Trump greeted his dominant Super Tuesday wins with triumphant confidence, promising to unify the Republican Party and handily beat Hillary Clinton in November. “I think that’s frankly going to be an easy race,” declared Trump from the stage of a banquet hall at Mar-a-Lago, his palatial residence and private club here, where the New York billionaire also congratulated Ted Cruz on winning Texas and dismissed Marco Rubio’s viability.

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Clinton pushes Sanders to the brink

POLITICO: Hillary Clinton scored decisive wins against Bernie Sanders across the South on Super Tuesday and allowed herself, for the first time in two grueling presidential runs, to assume the mantle of prohibitive Democratic front-runner. With her demeanor and tone at her victory speech in Miami, Clinton signaled her next fight is against Donald Trump in the general election.

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Mexico to Counter Republican Calls for Border Wall

WALL STREET JOURNALS: Mexico’s government said on Tuesday it would launch a diplomatic effort in the U.S. to remind Americans of the benefits of a close bilateral relationship, at a time when U.S. presidential candidates Donald Trump, Mark Rubio and Ted Cruz promote building a wall between the two countries.

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BORDER STORIES

Pct. 1: Benavides, Rosenbaum facing runoff

BROWNSVILLE HERALD: A runoff is likely for the Cameron County Precinct 1 commissioner’s seat between Sofia C. Benavides and Beatrice Rosenbaum, as neither candidate managed to get 50 percent of the vote. Unofficial voting results showed Benavides received 3,392 votes to Rosenbaum’s 2,335 votes. Fausto Martinez had 647 votes while Joseph Cantu came in fourth place with 517 votes.

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Saenz wins DA race

BROWNSVILLE HERALD: In a tight race for the Democratic Cameron County district attorney nomination, incumbent District Attorney Luis V. Saenz was able to garner enough votes in Tuesday’s primary election to prevent a runoff for the seat. Saenz faced off against attorney and Brownsville Navigation District Commissioner Carlos Masso for the second time in recent years.

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Lucio garners Democratic nomination for sheriff

BROWNSVILLE HERALD: Cameron County Sheriff Omar Lucio headed for victory Tuesday night in the race for the Democratic nomination for sheriff, while John Chambers and Victor Cortez appeared headed for a runoff in the Republican primary.  With 89 of 102 precincts reporting, Lucio led challenger Gregorio Puente III with 19,700 votes to Puente’s 7,732.

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Oliveira set to keep seat

BROWNSVILLE HERALD: State Rep. Rene Oliveira, D-Brownsville, was on the road to victory to represent the Democratic Party in the November general election for District 37 race. Oliveira, who has held the position since 1981, led challenger Don De Leon in the early votes 4,247 to 1,996, unofficial results indicated.

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Willacy DA race heads to runoff

VALLEY MORNING STAR: Willacy County District Attorney Bernard Ammerman and Raymondville attorney Annette Hinojosa appear headed for a May 24 runoff election. Unofficial results show former longtime District Attorney Juan Angel Guerra failed to make the runoff.

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Arturo Cisneros Nelson wins Cameron County District Judge 138 in Democratic primary

VALLEY MORNING STAR: Incumbent Arturo Cisneros Nelson has won the race for Cameron County District Judge 138 in the Democratic primary. With 14,819 votes, Nelson defeated Harlingen Attorney Sonia Herrera, who took 11,391 votes.

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Ruiz tops Sanchez for Cameron County Commissioner Pct. 4 primary

VALLEY MORNING STAR: Local attorney Gus Ruiz won the race for Cameron County commissioner Pct. 4 in yesterday’s Democratic primary. He faces no Republican opponent in November’s general election.

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District 15 Democratic candidates headed to runoff

THE MONITOR: In a tense Tuesday night for the six hopefuls seeking the Democratic nomination for U.S Congressional District 15, the only clarity for the field is that an expected runoff will become a reality. Vicente Gonzalez led the polling most of the evening and appeared headed to 42.4 percent top spot as of press time Tuesday night. However, the McAllen attorney fell short of the 51 percent majority he needed to receive the nomination outright. The only question is who his runoff opponent will be.

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Muñoz Jr. likely ends Padron’s push for legislative seat; Lucio Jr. wins handily

THE MONITOR: Incumbent Democrat Sergio Muñoz Jr. likely put an end to Safeguard Insurance’s Abraham Padron’s push for State Representative District 36, according to unofficial election results available at 10 p.m. Muñoz was ahead 59 percent to Padron’s 41, but final tallies were not available by press time. There is no Republican challenger.

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Rep. Gonzalez keeps seat on Legislature

KVIA-TV: State Rep. Mary Gonzalez will keep her seat in the Texas Legislature. She maintained a nearly 20 percent lead over Chente Quintanilla all night in the Democratic primary for State Rep. of District 75 late Tuesday.

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STATE STORIES

Years After Voter ID Law, Alternative IDs Confuse Texas County Officials

TEXAS OBSERVER: More than four years have passed since the Republican-controlled Texas Legislature passed a controversial voter ID law, one of the strictest in the nation. At the time, civil rights groups and Democrats pointed out that hundreds of thousands of Texans lacked a driver license or other government-sanctioned forms of photo ID, and that cost and access could be a barrier to acquiring them. In one of the few concessions to opponents, Republicans agreed to create a new form of ID, the election identification certificate (EIC). The EIC is free to any qualifying voter as long as you can produce some combination of an array of underlying documentation, such as a birth certificate, Social Security card and proof of residence.

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High on the Hog

TEXAS OBSERVER: Campaigning in Texas takes a lot of money, but holding office — that can get really expensive. Just ask Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller, who nearly drained his campaign account in 2015, his first year in statewide office, with three years to go before his next election.

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Straus, and Most of His Allies, Survive Challenges From Right

TEXAS TRIBUNE: More than four years have passed since the Republican-controlled Texas Legislature passed a controversial voter ID law, one of the strictest in the nation. At the time, civil rights groups and Democrats pointed out that hundreds of thousands of Texans lacked a driver license or other government-sanctioned forms of photo ID, and that cost and access could be a barrier to acquiring them. In one of the few concessions to opponents, Republicans agreed to create a new form of ID, the election identification certificate (EIC). The EIC is free to any qualifying voter as long as you can produce some combination of an array of underlying documentation, such as a birth certificate, Social Security card and proof of residence.

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Reports: Lawsuit Challenging Ted Cruz’s Eligibility Thrown Out

TEXAS TRIBUNE: A lawsuit challenging U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz’s eligibility to run for president has been thrown out, according to media reports. An Illinois voter filed a lawsuit challenging the ability of Cruz, who was born in Canada, to run for president. Judge Maureen Ward Kirby of the Cook County Circuit Court threw out the challenge on Tuesday, according to USA Today.

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Incumbents Holding Supreme Court Seats, Criminal Court Runoffs Likely

TEXAS TRIBUNE: Lawyers arguing in front of the Texas Supreme Court next year likely won’t need to memorize any new faces. In early, unofficial returns, all three Republican incumbents running for re-election to the state’s highest civil court were projected to win their primary races — all but guaranteeing them victory in November. Two of three Court of Criminal Appeals races, meanwhile, seemed to be headed for runoffs.

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Outspoken Education Board Candidate Appears Headed to Runoff

TEXAS TRIBUNE: An East Texas Republican who once claimed President Obama used to be a gay prostitute appears headed for a May 24 primary runoff in the race to represent District 9 on the State Board of Education. And at least one political scientist believes Mary Lou Bruner could fare even better there than she did on Tuesday.

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Republican Presidential Race Boosts Primary Turnout

TEXAS TRIBUNE: Voting turnout in Texas surged on Tuesday with the highest number of Republican voters making it to the polls for the party’s primary in more than a decade, thanks to a volatile presidential party contest and the state’s earlier position in the nation’s primaries. “It’s wild and crazy,” said Toni Pippins Poole, Dallas County Elections Administrator. “This is the first time in 20-odd years we’ve had such an early primary and the main candidate for each party has not already been decided.”

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Super Tuesday: Clinton, Trump Win Big; Cruz Wins In Texas

TEXAS PUBLIC RADIO: For complete Election Night returns check with the Bexar County Elections Department or the Texas Secretary of State. With 558 precincts out of 717 counted we take a look at some of Bexar County’s most watched races as well as a break down the wins for the presidential candidates.

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NATIONAL STORIES

The day the Republican Party ruptured

POLITICO: Donald Trump’s Super Tuesday sweep propelled him ever closer to the GOP presidential nomination — and pushed the party he seeks to lead to the breaking point. The Manhattan billionaire, boosted by support from disaffected blue-collar voters, relished his Super Tuesday victories beneath giant chandeliers inside a Versailles-inspired ballroom at his own Mar-a-Lago resort. Trump had just razed Ted Cruz’s Southern firewall and left Marco Rubio gasping as Chris Christie, the former alpha male he’s turned into his own obsequious warm-up act, introduced his former rival as “Mr. Trump.”

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Cruz pins his hopes on two-man race

POLITICO: It wasn’t the Super Tuesday result that Ted Cruz might have envisioned a month ago, but his victories in Texas, Oklahoma and Alaska gave him a rationale to continue his campaign– and to attempt to seize the title of Trump alternative, as he looks to build momentum in the series of states that vote ahead of March 15. “We have a choice,” Cruz said at his watch party here. “So long as the field remains divided, Donald Trump’s path to the nomination remains more likely. And that would be a disaster for Republicans, for conservatives, and for the nation.”

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Clinton’s new problem: How to let Bernie down easy

POLITICO: Fresh off a commanding Super Tuesday performance, Hillary Clinton now faces her newest problem: How to win over Bernie Sanders while he refuses to give up. The results of the 11 states that voted March 1 widened Clinton’s delegate lead and made Sanders’ task of catching up to Clinton even more daunting — and implausible. While Sanders held his own in a handful of states – he won Minnesota, Colorado, Oklahoma and Vermont — the former secretary of state carried Massachusetts and steamrolled him in the South with decisive wins in Georgia, Arkansas, Tennessee, Alabama and Virginia, where she won black voters by landslide margins, according to exit polls.

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Doctors In Flint, Mich., Push A Healthy Diet To Fight Lead Exposure

NPR: A bright red tablecloth adds a pop of color to Ashara Manns’ kitchen at her home in Flint, Mich. The substitute teacher is at the stove, where she pours two bottles of water into a stockpot before dumping in big bags of mixed greens. “Normally, I would rinse these with the running water, so hopefully they’re still safe,” Manns says.

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In An Unusual Move, The EPA Tries To Pull A Pesticide From Market

NPR: Chances are, you’ve never heard of flubendiamide. It’s not among the most toxic insecticides, and it’s not among the widely used chemicals, either. In recent years, it has been used on about a quarter of the nation’s tobacco and 14 percent of almonds, peppers and watermelons. But flubendiamide is now at the center of a public dispute between the Environmental Protection Agency and the company that sells it, Bayer CropScience. That dispute is arousing fear in the pesticide industry — and hope among activists who are pushing for the EPA to regulate pesticides more tightly.

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Is Nutritious Food In Peril, Along With Pollinators?

THE HILL: Here’s an exercise in deductive logic, with implications for our food supply. Fact: Insects such as bees and butterflies are helpful, and sometimes essential, for producing much of our food, including a majority of our fruits, vegetables and nuts.

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Refugees Say N.Y. School District Blocked Them From Going To High School

NPR: Whether you’re a citizen or an immigrant in New York state, you have a right to attend a public high school and earn a diploma until you’re 21. That was Pawsansoe Bree’s plan after she left a refugee camp in Thailand when she was almost 19. She resettled about four hours north of New York City — in the small, Rust Belt city of Utica, N.Y., which the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees once called “The Town That Loves Refugees.”

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Mortgage giants headed for crisis

THE HILL: Housing industry experts are sounding the alarm over the increasingly dire financial situation of the federal mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The government-controlled enterprises are hurtling toward a severe capital crunch that will leave no buffer for absorbing future losses, experts say, potentially putting taxpayers on the hook for another bailout.

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5 takeaways from Super Tuesday

POLITICO: Democrats and Republicans ratified their respective front-runners on Super Tuesday — and the two winners revealed two parties galloping in radically divergent directions. The Democrats’ top priority in coalescing behind Hillary Clinton: running the country.

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MEXICO STORIES

Mexico’s monarch butterfly population is rebounding. What happened?

CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR: Millions of monarch butterflies settled in Mexico for the winter this year. Forming a 10-acre carpet of black-and-orange striped winged insects in their wintering grounds, this year’s migration represents a significant uptick in numbers for the majestic butterflies. Because the monarch butterflies cluster on trees by the thousand, lepidopterists keep count of the insects by the area they cover. This winter saw a the butterflies blanket an area more than 3.5 times greater than the previous season, which saw 2.8 acres of butterflies. This is also up from the record low of 1.66 acres in 2013.

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Losing Year for Mexico’s Billionaires, As Fortunes Plunged 30%

FORBES: The combined net worth of Mexico’s billionaires dropped $44.9 billion this year, from $142.9 in 2015 to $99.6 billion –around 30%, according to the 2016 Forbes Billionaires List released Tuesday. It was  the worst year for Mexican billionaires since 2013, when their aggregate wealth was $148.6 billion. Mexico now also has two fewer billionaires than in 2015, and no newcomers. Based on the 2016 Forbes billionaire data, with a net worth of $50 billion, Mexican telecom mogul Carlos Slim Helú dropped from No. 2 to No. 4 position in the world’s billionaires rankings. Slim’s fortune was $27.1 billion less than in 2015, making him the biggest dollar loser on the 2016 Forbes Billionaires List.

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NOTICIAS DE MEXICO

A 5 años de masacre en San Fernando, la PGR es incapaz de dar avances

PROCESO: Casi seis años después de la masacre de 72 migrantes en San Fernando, Tamaulipas, funcionarios de la Procuraduría General de la República (PGR) no fueron capaces de dar a conocer avances de la investigación a 14 familiares de las víctimas que viajaron desde Brasil, Honduras, Guatemala y El Salvador en busca de justicia.

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Clinton y Trump se acercan a candidatura por la presidencia de EU

PROCESO: Hillary Rodhman Clinton y Donald Trump se anotaron una victoria en las elecciones primarias y asambleas electorales del llamado Súper Martes, por lo que se perfilaron como los eventuales candidatos a la Presidencia estadunidense por los partidos Demócrata y Republicano, respectivamente.

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