Ashley Lopez | KUT

Ashley Lopez moderates a panel on federal immigration policy in July 2018.
Credit Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Ashley Lopez joined KUT in January 2016. She covers politics and health care, and is part of the NPR-Kaiser Health News reporting collaborative. Previously she worked as a reporter at public radio stations in Louisville, Ky.; Miami and Fort Myers, Fla., where she won a National Edward R. Murrow Award.

Ashley was also part of NPR’s Political Reporting Partnership during the 2016 presidential election. She earned her bachelor’s degree in journalism and political science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

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Voters in line on the first day of early voting in Texas at Southpark Meadows shopping center in South Austin.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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En tiempos normales, el primer día de votación anticipada suele ser la jornada más ocupada del voto presencial de cara al día de las elecciones.

Pero estos no son tiempos normales.

Travis County residents line up to vote at the Southpark Meadows shopping center on the first day of early voting.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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Alrededor del 11% de los votantes registrados en el condado de Travis votaron en los dos primeros días de la votación anticipada en Texas.

Son más de 95,000 votos por correo y en persona emitidos, miles más que los sufragados a esta altura durante las elecciones presidenciales de 2016.

La secretaria del condado de Travis, Dana DeBeauvoir, dijo que está viendo un mayor crecimiento entre los votos por correo.

Voters in line on the first day of early voting in Texas at Southpark Meadows shopping center in South Austin.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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In normal times, the first day of early voting is usually the busiest day of in-person voting ahead of Election Day.

But these are not normal times.

Travis County residents line up to vote at the Southpark Meadows shopping center on the first day of early voting.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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About 11% of registered voters in Travis County voted by the first two days of early voting in Texas.

That’s more than 95,000 mail-in and in-person ballots cast, which is thousands more than what had been cast at this point during the 2016 presidential election.

Abortion-rights supporters confront anti-abortion protesters at a Rally for Life in downtown Austin in 2018.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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La Corte de Apelaciones del Quinto Circuito anuló una ley de Texas que prohibía el procedimiento más común de abortos en el segundo trimestre del embarazo.

Voters line up outside a polling center at the Southpark Meadows shopping center on the first day of early voting in the 2020 general election.
Gabriel C. Pérez

First things first: Most votes don't get counted until Election Day. To be even more clear, those votes aren’t counted until the polls close that evening.

Abortion-rights supporters confront anti-abortion protesters at a Rally for Life in downtown Austin in 2018.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals has struck down a Texas law banning the most common procedure for second-trimester abortions.

A doll on a toy stretcher at Dell Children's hospital.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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La tasa de niños sin seguro médico en Texas aumentó drásticamente entre 2016 y 2019, según un nuevo informe publicado por el Centro para Niños y Familias de la Universidad de Georgetown.

A doll on a toy stretcher at Dell Children's hospital.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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Texas’ uninsured rate among children dramatically spiked between 2016 and 2019, according to a new report released by the Georgetown University Center for Children and Families.

A medical instrument for a child.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

More than 20 advocacy groups are asking Texas officials to reconsider proposed staffing cuts that could create delays for vulnerable populations seeking vital health services.

Travis County set up four drop-off sites for mail-in ballots across the county.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Texas voters and voting rights groups are suing Gov. Greg Abbott in federal district court over his order limiting the number of hand-delivery sites for mail-in ballots.

The League of Women Voters helps people register to vote and apply for mail-in ballots, in North Austin in August.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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Funcionarios del condado de Travis dicen que planean luchar contra la orden del gobernador Greg Abbott de limitar el número de lugares donde los votantes pueden entregar en mano las papeletas de voto por correo.

Abbott anunció la orden este jueves, el mismo día que los funcionarios electorales locales habilitaron los sitios de entrega.

The League of Women Voters helps people register to vote and apply for mail-in ballots, in North Austin in August.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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Travis County officials say they plan to fight Gov. Greg Abbott’s order limiting the number of places where voters can hand deliver mail-in ballots.

Abbott announced the order Thursday, the same day local election officials opened the drop-off sites.

Dell Seton Medical Center in 2017.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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Es probable que casi un millón de tejanos de bajos ingresos se inscriban en Medicaid si el estado expande el programa bajo la Ley de Cuidado de Salud Asequible, según un nuevo informe de la Escuela de Gobierno y Servicio Público de la Universidad de Texas A&M.

Dell Seton Medical Center in 2017.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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Almost a million low-income Texans would likely enroll in Medicaid if the state were to expand the program under the Affordable Care Act, according to a new report from the Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Officials at the United States Postal Service told members of Congress in Texas that voting groups are allowed to leave voter registration and absentee ballot applications at post offices.

A sign in Spanish and English lets people know they can get information on registering to vote.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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Los votantes latinos en Texas se dirigirán a las urnas mientras la pandemia continúa afectando desproporcionadamente a sus comunidades. Eso significa que los latinos podrían estar más distraídos que de costumbre, pero, también, que tienen más que perder.

Los expertos dicen que esta dinámica ha hecho difícil predecir qué tipo de impacto tendrá el total de votos.

A sign in Spanish and English lets people know they can get information on registering to vote.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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Latino voters in Texas will be heading to the polls as a pandemic continues to disproportionately affect their communities. That means Latinos could be more preoccupied than usual – but they also have more to lose.

Experts say this dynamic has made it difficult to predict what kind of impact the voting bloc will have.

The empty hallway at Bedicheck Middle School in South Austin.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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Las escuelas del condado de Travis podrían ser centros de votación durante las elecciones presidenciales del 3 de noviembre.

The empty hallway at Bedicheck Middle School in South Austin.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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Schools in Travis County likely will be polling sites during the presidential election Nov. 3.

Local election officials had been unsure whether schools would be safe places to vote during the pandemic. At a school board meeting Monday, however, Austin Independent School District officials indicated they want to make Election Day a student holiday. Students would have the day off, while teachers could catch up on training.

Abby Strite, who is participating in a vaccine trial for COVID-19.
Michael Minasi / KUT

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A medida que la fase 3 de los ensayos clínicos para una potencial vacuna contra el COVID-19 se está realizando durante este mes, algunas personas están haciendo sonar la alarma sobre que el proceso podría ser apresurado.

Abby Strite, who is participating in a vaccine trial for COVID-19.
Michael Minasi / KUT

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As phase 3 trials for a potential COVID-19 vaccine get underway this month, some are sounding the alarm that the process could be rushed.  

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Officials with the nonpartisan League of Women Voters of Texas say their volunteers are no longer allowed to leave voter registration forms at U.S. post offices.

The post office on Sixth Street in East Austin.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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Los votantes del condado de Travis, nerviosos por los retrasos en la oficina de correos, podrán entregar en mano las boletas de voto por correo o dejarlas en sitios de drive thru este otoño, dijo este martes la secretaria del condado Dana DeBeauvoir.

"Si quieren votar por correo pero ahora están preocupados, por lo menos tienen la opción de hacerlo desde el auto", dijo a los comisionados del condado.

The post office on Sixth Street in East Austin.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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Travis County voters nervous about delays with the post office will be able to hand-deliver mail-in ballots or drop them off at drive-thru sites this fall, County Clerk Dana DeBeauvoir said Tuesday.

Liam James / NPR

Young people have the potential to influence races in seven congressional districts in Texas, according to a new study from the Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning & Engagement (CIRCLE) at Tufts University.

A U.S. Postal Service worker delivers mail in Austin in March.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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Los tejanos deben prepararse desde temprano si quieren votar por correo en las próximas elecciones presidenciales, dicen grupos defensores de los derechos de los votantes.

A U.S. Postal Service worker delivers mail in Austin in March.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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Texans should prepare early if they want to vote by mail in the upcoming presidential election, voting groups say.

Texas officials were recently warned by the U.S. Postal Service about potential delays delivering mail-in ballots, so getting an early start is more important than ever.

Residents wear masks to vote in the runoff elections, at Joslin Elementary School last month.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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El apoyo al voto por correo es débil entre los latinos de Texas, un grupo demográfico clave en las próximas elecciones, según una nueva encuesta realizada por Latino Decisions.

Residents wear masks to vote in the runoff elections, at Joslin Elementary School last month.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Lee esta historia en español. 

Support for mail-in voting is soft among Texas Latinos, a key demographic in the upcoming elections, according to a new poll conducted by Latino Decisions.

The poll, released on the first day of the Democratic National Convention, was commissioned by Latino groups SOMOS and UnidosUS.

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