TXdecides | KERA News

TXdecides

Texas Decides is a project from the Texas Station Collaborative, which includes KERA, KUT in Austin, Texas Public Radio in San Antonio, Marfa Public Radio and Houston Public Media. 

The project started in the fall of 2016. Leading up to the election, public radio stations across Texas asked listeners to submit questions related to national, statewide and local politics. After listeners voted on their favorite questions, reporters tackled everything from why Texas is so red to why voter turnout is so low in the state.

At the start of the 85th Legislature, stations teamed up again to ask listeners to submit questions they have about the complicated lawmaking process in Texas. After listeners vote to narrow down to their most pressing questions, reporters will explore them to find the answers. Stories will be published throughout the remainder of the session this spring. 

See all stories from the "Texas Decides" project below.

Samantha Guzman / KERA News

The excitement at the Dallas County GOP watch party cranked up a notch each time a state was called for Donald Trump. Republican leaders and GOP supporters celebrated a race that stunned them all.

A ballroom at the Westin Dallas Park Central erupted with cheers each time Donald Trump’s electoral vote total ticked up.

Last week we launched TXDecides, our collaborative project with public radio newsrooms across the state. The goal was simple: Answer Texas voters' questions ahead of Election Day. Y'all had lots of questions. So many, in fact, that we had to pare down the questions to a scant five.

Luckily, we culled some of the remaining questions and decided to answer them as best we could. 

Since 1972, Texas has had a lower voter turnout rate than the national rate for presidential elections.

Jacqueline Mermea / The Texas Tribune

Any registered voter may vote early in person. To vote early by mail, applications for a ballot were due Oct. 28. To get your vote counted, submit your completed mail-in ballot to your county's voter registrar office by 7 p.m. on Election Day, Nov. 8.

Why Is Voter Turnout So Low In Texas?

Oct 28, 2016
Erik Hersman / Flickr

In recent years, voter turnout in Texas has been...well, let’s just say not everything is bigger here. State voter turnout has been below the national average for the past few decades, regularly falling below 50 percent.

PHOTOS BY THE TEXAS TRIBUNE AND GAGE SKIDMORE

It’s no secret Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are two of the most disliked major party nominees to ever run for President. That has some Texans searching for other options…any options…when it comes to our next commander and chief. Austinite Kaia Tingley asked: “Can we vote for either Libertarian or Green Party candidates in Texas?”

Shutterstock

Voters continued to turn out in record-breaking numbers across North Texas and the state on the second day of early voting Tuesday.

Shutterstock

All 36 of Texas’ congressional seats are on the ballot this fall, but only one of those races is considered truly competitive. The vast majority of state House and Senate races aren’t particularly competitive, either. One big reason: A lot of the state's districts are drawn to give one party or the other a big majority.

ProPublica

A record-breaking number of voters cast their ballots early across Texas. That's good news for democracy, but the high turnout on opening day of early voting wasn't without incident, including long lines throughout the state, inaccurate voter ID signs and machine snafus in Denton County. 

In Some Texas Counties, Long Lines Complicate Early Voting

Oct 25, 2016
Michael Stravato for The Texas Tribune

Avoiding long lines on Election Day is supposed to be one of the benefits of voting early, but on the first official day to cast ballots in Texas, some parts of the state reported long waits — sometimes hours — along with a few other snafus.

How Secure Is Electronic Voting In Texas?

Oct 25, 2016
Al Ortiz / Houston Public Media

With talk of rigging and stolen elections, people are more concerned than usual about whether their vote will count. 

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