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BC-TX--Texas News Digest 12 am, TX

March 19, 2019

Good morning! Here’s a look at AP’s general news coverage in Texas at this hour. Questions about coverage plans are welcome and should be directed to the Dallas AP at 972-991-2100, or, in Texas, 800-442-7189. Email: aptexas@ap.org. Jill Bleed is at the desk after 5:30 a.m.

Reminder: This information is not for publication or broadcast, and these coverage plans are subject to change. Expected stories may not develop, or late-breaking and more newsworthy events may take precedence. Advisories and digests will keep you up to date. All times are Central.

For up-to-the minute information on AP’s coverage, visit Coverage Plan at newsroom.ap.org.




WASHINGTON _ The Pentagon has sent a 20-page list of military construction projects to Congress that might be slashed to pay for President Donald Trump’s wall along the Mexican border. Democrats expressed hope that by knowing which local projects could be targeted, lawmakers would be likelier to override Trump’s veto of a measure aimed at preventing the cuts. With the House scheduled to vote Tuesday on overriding Trump’s veto, the spokeswoman for the top GOP vote counter predicted the president will prevail anyway. By Alan Fram and Lolita C. Baldor. SENT: 700 words, photos.



NORTH LIBERTY, Iowa _ After weeks of hype, former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke swung through Iowa for the first time and strode into the presidential race to larger crowds and more media attention than most others in the already crowded 2020 Democratic field. Until recently, O’Rourke was a little-known El Paso congressman whose views weren’t well known. His campaign rollout filled in some blanks and gave him a chance to try to move past some flubs, such as quips about being a part-time parent. Still, he remains something of a political mystery. By Will Weissert. SENT: 950 words, photos.


CENTER LINE, Mich. _ Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke is boasting that the more than $6 million he raised online within a day of announcing his White House bid, the most reported by any 2020 candidate, was helping to create “the largest grassroots campaign this country has ever seen.” The “record-breaking” $6.1 million collected last week came “without a dime” from political action committees, corporations or special interests, O’Rourke spokesman Chris Evans tweeted. The figure is just above what Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders reported for his first day as a 2020 candidate. By David Eggert and Dino Hazell. SENT: 480 words, photos, video.


_ ELECTION 2020-EARLY FUNDRAISING _ Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, little known outside his home state, boasts he raised over $1 million in the days after launching his White House bid. Former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper and others say they did, too. Impressive numbers, even if dwarfed by the $6 million or so reported by Bernie Sanders and now Beto O’Rourke. By Brian Slodysko. SENT: 910 words, photos, video, audio.


BOSTON _ Elizabeth Warren has spent much of the last decade as a leader of the Democratic Party’s liberal wing. But three and a half months into her presidential campaign, the Massachusetts senator is facing tough questions about fundraising and electability, along with lingering skepticism about her past claim to Native American identity. of a DNA test in October that showed “strong evidence” of Native American ancestry, albeit at least six generations back. The move backfired, emboldening her critics — especially Trump, who regularly calls Warren “Pocahontas” — who have long charged that Warren exaggerated her ethnic heritage for personal gain. Warren privately apologized to the head of the Cherokee Nation in early February. But just a few days later, reports surfaced that Warren had claimed Native American heritage on a 1986 Texas State Bar registration form. By Steve Peoples, Elana Schor and Hunter Woodall. SENT: 1200 words, photos, video. Moved on national political news services.


DALLAS _ Former president George W. Bush welcomed new U.S. citizens during a naturalization ceremony in Dallas, saying that “amid all the complications of policy, may we never forget that immigration is a blessing and a strength.” Bush and former first lady Laura Bush both spoke to the about 50 candidates for naturalization during the ceremony at his institute at the George W. Bush Presidential Center. By Jamie Stengle. SENT: 130 words. UPCOMING: 400 words, photos by 5:30 p.m.



HOUSTON _ A large fire at a Houston-area petrochemicals terminal will likely burn for another two days, authorities said, noting that air quality around the facility was testing within normal guidelines. The fire erupted Sunday at Intercontinental Terminals Company in Deer Park, about 15 miles southeast of Houston. Firefighters were working to control the blaze, and the company said the risk of explosion remained “minimal.” By Juan A. Lozano. SENT: 620 words, photos, video.




LOS ANGELES _ A woman was arrested on suspicion of murder after the body of her 9-year-old daughter was found in a duffel bag along a suburban horse trail near Los Angeles, authorities said. Taquesta Graham, 28, is expected to be charged with murder on Wednesday, Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials said. The dead girl was found March 5 at the bottom of an embankment in the suburb of Hacienda Heights. Graham was extradited from Texas to California last week and was initially held on an unrelated warrant. SENT: 210 words, photos.


AUSTIN, Texas _ Austin’s police chief is pledging more security for the city’s entertainment district following multiple shootings over the weekend as the South by Southwest Festival drew to a close. The Austin American-Statesman reports officers responded to three separate shootings Saturday morning that sent five people to the hospital. Two more shootings occurred within 24 hours, including Austin officers exchanging gunfire early Sunday with an unidentified man near where the SXSW festival was held. SENT: 180 words.


_ UNIVERSITY-WHITE NATIONALISTS-SHOOTING _ A Texas man has been sentenced to five years in prison for serving as the getaway driver for a man convicted of shooting at an anti-white-supremacist protester. SENT: 130 words.

_ FOOTBALL PLAYERS SHOT _ Authorities say two Texas A&M University-Commerce football players are recovering in a Florida hospital after being shot during a robbery. SENT: 130 words.

_ DALLAS OFFICER-MISTAKEN APARTMENT _ A date has been set for the murder trial of a white former Dallas police officer who fatally shot an unarmed black man in his own apartment. SENT: 130 words, photos, video.

_ OFFICERS INDICTED-DALLAS _ Prosecutors have dismissed charges against three Dallas police officers who were indicted after a man they arrested and physically restrained died in 2016. SENT: 130 words.

_ RUNAWAY TEENS ARRESTED _ New Mexico State Police say four teenage runaways have been arrested in connection with an armed robbery west of Santa Rosa and could be involved in crimes in other states. Investigators are trying to determine if the teens were involved in similar armed robberies in Texas and Colorado. SENT: 130 words.

_ COURTHOUSE EVACUATED _ A bomb squad has been called to investigate a suspicious package that prompted the evacuation of a courthouse in Texarkana. SENT: 110 words.

_ CIVIL WAR FLAG _ An American flag that a Maine regiment brought into battles in Louisiana and Texas during the Civil War has returned to its home state. SENT: 130 words.


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