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

October 2, 2018

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. Ken Miller 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Reminder: This information is not for publication or broadcast, and these coverage plans are subject to change.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.

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TEXAS GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS:

ELECTION 2018-OBAMA ENDORSEMENTS

WASHINGTON — Former President Barack Obama is expanding his influence ahead of November’s midterm elections. He has released a second slate of endorsements for Democrats running for offices ranging from local to national, bringing the total to more than 300. While the candidates that Obama endorsed stretch up and down the ballot — from gubernatorial hopefuls to aspiring state lawmakers — he notably declined to wade into several races that have captivated national attention. Obama did not endorse Rep. Beto O’Rourke, the Democrat challenging Sen. Ted Cruz in Texas, or Phil Bredesen, a former Democratic governor of Tennessee who is now running for Senate against Republican Rep. Marcia Blackburn. By Juana Summers. SENT: 500 words, photos.

STRAIGHT TICKET VOTING-TEXAS

AUSTIN, Texas — Texas is one of just eight states still offering “straight-ticket” voting, a shortcut that allows voters to click one box at the top of the ballot and automatically register votes for a single party’s candidates in every race — as many as 100 offices in some counties. The Houston Chronicle reports it’s a practice that’s going out of style across the U.S., but one proven to help Texas Republicans sweep statewide elections over the past two decades. SENT: 300 words.

Also:

— ELECTION 2018-SENATE-TEXAS-O’ROURKE’S STUDENT ARTICLE — Democratic Texas Senate candidate Beto O’Rourke is apologizing for writing in Columbia University’s student newspaper nearly 30 years ago that a Broadway musical featured actresses “whose only qualifications seem to be their phenomenally large breasts and tight buttocks.” SENT: 130 words, photos.

AROUND THE STATE & NATION:

SURF RESORT-AMOEBA

WACO — Health officials conducted tests at a landlocked surf resort in Central Texas after a man who visited there died from what is commonly known to as a “brain-eating amoeba.” Waco-McLennan County Public Health District spokesman Kelly Craine told The Associated Press that results of testing by a team from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are expected later this week. SENT: 320 words, photos.

GIRL-LIFE SUPPORT

A North Texas couple has obtained a temporary court order blocking a hospital from disconnecting their 9-year-old daughter from life support. Doctors at Cook Children’s Medical Center in Fort Worth had planned to remove Payton Summons from life support against her parents’ wishes. However, her parents obtained a 14-day restraining order blocking the hospital from removing the child from the ventilator that keeps her breathing. SENT: 330 words.

IN BRIEF:

— MOSQUE FIRE-REOPENING — A South Texas mosque that was torched early last year has reopened thanks to support from around the world and more than $1 million in donations. SENT: 130 words, photos.

— TEXAS POLICE SHOOTING-TRUCK ALARM — The Dallas County District Attorney’s Office says it plans to retry a former suburban Dallas police officer for the 2017 shooting of an unarmed black man. SENT: 120 words.

— HELICOPTER CRASH — The U.S. Coast Guard has suspended its search for possible survivors of a helicopter crash in southeast Alaska in an in accident on a flight from Texas. SENT: 110 words.

— HEALTH CARE-MERGER — Two major not-for-profit health care providers in Texas plan to merge with a goal of improved patient care and more cost-effective services. SENT: 130 words. Moved on general and financial news services.

— BANCORPSOUTH-ACQUISITION — A Mississippi bank has completed its purchase of a Texas bank for $152 million in cash and stock. SENT: 130 words. Moved on general and financial news services.

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If you have stories of regional or statewide interest, please email them to aptexas@ap.org

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The AP.

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