Thursday, January 18th, 2024

The Roundup

Article Icon 1 Biden Administration Admits Mistake

The Biden administration admitted in a court filing that three migrants drowned in the Rio Grande before Border Patrol agents were restricted from the area where the drownings occurred.

The White House and multiple media sources initially blamed Texas for the deaths, stating that Border Patrol agents were “physically barred” by Texas Army National Guard personnel.

In a statement, Governor Abbott accosted federal officials and news media for being “so eager to point the finger at Texas for the drowning of migrants, they forgot to get the facts.”

Article Icon 1 Zuckerberg to be Deposed in Texas

Meta’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg will be required to give testimony in a Texas lawsuit that alleges the company used facial recognition technology without customer consent.

The lawsuit claims that Meta “secretly harvested” biometric data from its users in violation of state law.

Texas is seeking civil penalties potentially amounting to hundreds of billions of dollars. Meta has described the suit as “without merit” and had sought to avoid having Zuckerberg deposed.

Article Icon 1 Floating Barriers Can Stay for Now

On Wednesday, a federal appeals court allowed Texas to keep its floating barriers on the Rio Grande, reversing a December ruling that ordered their removal.

The barrier, made up of linked concrete-anchored buoys, spans the length of three soccer fields along the border between Texas and Mexico.

This is the latest legal dispute between the Biden administration and Texas Governor Greg Abbott over border control.

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Around Texas

Lubbock: In a district court in Lubbock, Texas, Attorney General Ken Paxton filed a $10 million lawsuit against Pfizer, accusing the company of deceiving the public about vaccine efficacy. The lawsuit is now moving to a federal court. (More)

El Paso is receiving $15 million in federal funding to build 74 charging stations for electric vehicles. (More)


A San Antonio couple used their Tesla Cybertruck to make coffee during a weather-related power loss. Their TikTok video garnered thousands of views and has sparked discussions about vehicle practicality during power outages. (Video)

Laredo: From January 18th-28th, the Laredo Theatre Guild will premier Robert Askins’ Hand to God theatrical play. The dark comedy tells the story of emotional struggles within the Lutheran church. (Video)


College Station: Firefighters used a recycling bin to save a freezing 150-pound tortoise named Jack and bring him inside. The tortoise has been kept as a pet by the same family for 24 years. (Photos)

Austin: Matthew McConaughey will be teaching a course at the University of Texas titled Script to Screen: Commercials. McConaughey has been teaching classes since 2015 and has developed his own curricula. (More)


Rusk and Panola counties: The U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled in favor of the EPA’s judgment that air quality is unsafe in the two counties due to high levels of sulfur dioxide in the air. (More)

Winnie: A rancher argued in front of the Supreme Court that the Texas Department of Transportation is responsible for flooding his land. The court’s decision will end a seven-year battle over a dam along Route 10 that caused serious flooding. (More)


➤  Dallas: Billionaire Mark Bloomberg is spending $14.6 million to develop a high school in west Dallas that’s focused on preparation for healthcare jobs. It’s part of a national $250 million project to build 10 schools. (More)

➤ Arlington: Jerry Jones has decided not to fire Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy, despite the team’s embarrassing first round playoff loss to the Green Bay Packers. “I am 100 percent supportive of him as our head coach and ability to reach our goals,” Jones said. (More)


Houston: Over 1,000 frozen bats have been captured and placed in 95-degree incubators by the Houston Humane Society. The bats will be released once temperatures rise to safe levels for the creatures. (More)

Memorial Villages: Police have recovered an heirloom wedding ring worth about $34,000. The ring was made in Italy about 200 years ago, and it was stolen by a home contractor in 2021. (More)

Texas Sports

➤ Astros reliever Kendall Graveman will miss the upcoming season after having surgery on his right shoulder. (More)

➤ Oddsmakers are favoring the Ravens over the Texans by nine points in Saturday’s matchup. (Full Breakdown)

Logan Eggleston was named the 2023 NCAA Woman of the Year. The Texas Longhorn volleyball player led her team to a national championship in 2022, and she’s the first student athlete from Texas to receive the honor. (More)

The Business Of Texas

➤ The historic Turkey Track Ranch is for sale for $180 million. In the 19th century, it was the site of the Adobe Walls battles between the U.S. and Native Americans. The property is drawing interest from conservation groups. (More)

Bitcoin mining operations in Texas slowed down dramatically as freezing weather pushed the power grid near its limits. Several cryptocurrency mining firms relocated to Texas after China banned the practice. (More)

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Et Cetera

Texas A&M’s Center for Coffee Research and Education has been recognized as a top 20 U.S. research institution for making a significant global impact. The center is tackling challenges in Central America’s coffee industry, ranging from low prices to coffee diseases. (Video)

A Houston couple lost 120 pounds in less than a year for an upcoming trip to Hawaii. After overhauling their diet and working out together, the wife lost 70 lbs & the husband lost 50 lbs. Their weight loss story was featured on the Today show. (Photos)

The Polling Station

 What is your favorite TV show set in Texas?

  1. Dallas
  2. Friday Night Lights
  3. Walker Texas Ranger
  4. King of the Hill
  5. Other

Wednesday’s Results:

What is your favorite state park in Texas?

  1. Palo Duro Canyon: 25.9%
  2. Galveston Island: 20.2%
  3. Other: 17.4%
  4. Dinosaur Valley: 13.1%
  5. Franklin Mountains: 12.3%
  6. Longhorn Cavern: 10.9%
Texas Trivia

Which native Texan became the most decorated soldier in U.S. History?

Show me the answer

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