Texas Matters

Fridays at 3:30 p.m., Saturdays at 6:30 a.m., and Sundays at 9:30 p.m.

Texas is a big state with a growing, diverse population and as the population grows, the issues and challenges facing its residents multiply.  Texas Matters is a statewide news program that spends half an hour each week looking at the issues and culture of Texas.

Texas Matters is hosted by David Martin Davies, who talks directly with policymakers and newsmakers in a lively discussion designed to shed light on issues often overlooked by other media.

David Martin Davies:

Davies is Texas Public Radio’s news director and a veteran journalist with over 20 years’ experience covering Texas, the border and Mexico.  He is a regular contributor to NPR and American Public Media's "Marketplace."  Davies also has written for "The San Antonio Light", "The San Antonio Express-News," "The Texas Observer" and others, and hosted KLRN public television’s interview program "Conversations."

Texas Matters is made possible by the UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures.

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Texas Matters
12:00 pm
Fri April 18, 2014

The History Of Early Texas Photography (From 1840s-1900)

Lent Munson Hitchcock with wife, Emily, and their two children (1855).
Jones Collection, DeGolyer Library, Central University Libraries, Southern Methodist University

Texas Matters: Dive into the hidden history of early Texas photographs with Lawrence T. Jones, III, whose new book "Lens on the Texas Frontier" presents a stunning look at life in early Texas.

The photograph collection of Lawrence T. Jones, III, is Texas history as you’ve never seen it before.

It may be surprising to most people that there is a strong photographic record of the history of Texas. There wasn’t a photojournalist at the battle of the Alamo, but it wasn’t too long afterward that photography was invented and cameras were carried into the wild West.

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Texas Matters
3:34 pm
Fri April 11, 2014

Did Gov. Perry Overstep Authority In Line-Item Veto Of Public Integrity Unit?

Credit Eileen Pace / TPR News

Texas Matters: In the last legislative session Gov. Perry threatened to and then vetoed the budget of the state's public integrity unit, a state agency that scrutinizes governmental affairs, when the Travis County district attorney, who oversees the unit, did not step down from her post. A special prosecutor is now looking into the case. Also on this show: The governor's race and pre-K, new addition to Texas public school curriculum, cleanup of oil spill on Texas coast, and endangered species vs. oil prospecting.

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Texas Matters
1:44 pm
Fri April 4, 2014

Is Desalination The Answer To Texas' Long-Term Water Needs?

Texas cities will likely have to start relying on several sources for their drinking water.
Chris Eudaily TPR News

Texas Matters: Texas has enjoyed cheap water for years, but it may not be that way for much longer as the days of relying on a single source for water are coming to a close. Desalinating salt water is expensive, but could help the state cope with water shortages. Also on this show: Lesser prairie chicken protection, fracking and cancer in Flower Mound, Texas.

The future landscape of water in Texas

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Texas Matters
2:05 pm
Fri March 28, 2014

How Texans Are Missing Out On Millions Under The ACA -- And It's Not Medicaid Expansion

The deadline is March 31 to sign up for coverage this year at Healthcare.gov.
U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

Texas Matters: A new report from the Kaiser Family Foundation details the government subsidies that are available to people signing up for health coverage under the Affordable Care Act. It seems that a lot of people in Texas are missing out. The mysterious death of 28-year-old Alfred Wright, who is African American, has caused racial issues to boil over in East Texas. Also on this show: Gender equality in the gubernatorial race.

Texans slow to sign up, slow to get subsidies

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Texas Matters
12:54 pm
Fri March 21, 2014

What Will We Learn From New Transparency In Privately-Run Texas State Jails?

Flickr User: 710928003 cc

Texas Matters: A court has ruled that privately-run jails are, in effect, governmental bodies when it comes to Texas open records law, so what will be uncovered from the new level of transparency that these institutions must follow? Will the Texas Windstorm Insurance Association be ready to pay out in the event of a destructive hurricane? Also on this show: Whooping crane populations along the coast and a new ocelot kitten in South Texas.

Privately-run jails must now open up records

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Texas Matters
4:01 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

How The Affordable Care Act Is Affecting Texas

David Martin Davies TPR News

Texas Matters: On this week's episode, we look at the ways the Affordable Care Act is affecting Texas, from a South Texas county that will be relying on the plan to service its employees, to efforts to get more of Texas' uninsured residents signed up for Obamacare.

Brooks County drops health coverage

Brooks County is in South Texas near the coast. It's not exactly on the border, but near enough to be heavily impacted by the cost of illegal immigration.

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Texas Matters
12:26 pm
Fri February 28, 2014

Looking Back At This Week's Same-Sex Marriage Ruling In Texas

Same-sex marriage activists, including Carlos Soto, holding a flag, gathered in front of the Bexar County Courthouse Wednesday night after the ruling.
Joey Palacios TPR News

Texas Matters: We recap the ruling and reaction in the case challenging Texas' ban on same-sex marriage and a look at the history behind the ban. Also on this show: A new UT/Texas Tribune poll shows how the state is changing. What do outsiders think of Texas politics? Groups push Gov. Perry to regulate stun guns in schools. And how the cold is affecting sea turtles on Padre Island.

Ruling comes down in Texas same-sex marriage case

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Texas Matters
1:44 pm
Fri February 21, 2014

Ted Nugent, Opposition Research & The Race For Railroad Commissioner

What could be better than the two frontrunners for governor attacking each other? Add outspoken rocker Ted Nugent to the mix.
Ryan Poppe/David Martin Davies TPR News

Texas Matters: The addition of rocker/conservative-activist Ted Nugent to the campaigning in the race for governor only served to add fuel to an already blazing fire. More on opposition research and it's role in modern campaigning, and how hydraulic fracking in North Texas could play a role in the race for railroad commissioner. Also on this show: Air quality in the Eagle Ford Shale, and a look at the next generation of Texas oil field workers.

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Texas Matters
1:34 pm
Fri February 14, 2014

Spotlight On Texas Same-Sex Marriage Ban In Run Up To March Primaries

The two Texas couples challenging the state's ban on same-sex marriage (from left to right): Cleo DeLeon and Nicole Dimetman, and Victor Holmes and Mark Phariss.
David Martin Davies TPR News

Texas Matters: More from the hearing in San Antonio Wednesday in the case challenging the Texas ban on same-sex marriage. Arguments have been made and a federal judge is now formulating a decision. If the judge strikes down the ban, the case will be immediately appealed to the conservative U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans. A comprehensive look at all the issues leading into the March primary election. Also on this show: How the border region is reacting to political ads.

Same-sex marriage debate hits Texas

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Texas Matters
1:46 pm
Fri February 7, 2014

The History Of The Texas Right Wing

Texas A&M University Press

Texas Matters: Republicans have dominated statewide elections in Texas for two decades, so what is the secret to their success? A new book examines their sometimes controversial journey to statewide domination. Also on this show: A new campaign is trying to sway lawmakers into expanding Medicare under the ACA.

How do they do it? Republican domination in Texas

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