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The Evening Brief: Dec. 4, 2013

Your evening reading: Texas gets OK to boost payments to primary care docs; Davis says she would have vetoed cuts to public schools; radioactive material stolen in Mexico

Patients wait to be seen at the People's Community Clinic in Austin, on Nov. 8, 2010. Founded in 1970, the People's Community Clinic is a primary care center for the medically under served and uninsured.

New in The Texas Tribune

•    State Gets Federal OK to Boost Medicaid Payments: "A year after Texas was slated to increase Medicaid payments to primary care physicians under the Affordable Care Act, the state has received federal approval to implement the change."

•    Wendy Davis Sees Legal Income Rise: "Democrat Wendy Davis only makes $7,200 a year in salary as a state senator, but her take-home pay more than doubled between 2010 and 2012 thanks to steadily rising income from her private law practice, tax records show."

•    Guest Column: Anglo Women the Key for Texas Democrats: "Barring any dramatic shifts in turnout across ethnic-racial groups in 2014 compared with 2010, [WendyDavis will need to make deep inroads among Anglos, especially among Anglo women, who will make up about a third of voters, if she is to have any hope of defeating [GregAbbott."

•    For Groundwater, Political Boundaries Trump Natural Ones: "Yet at a time when thirsty cities and industries are clamoring for groundwater more than ever, the resource is regulated by nearly 100 entities drawn along political boundaries such as county lines, in part because groundwater is considered a private property right in Texas."

•    Supporters of Mérida Cite Successes From Aid Package: "In these gritty neighborhoods, where paved roads and electricity aren’t a given, participants in various social and educational programs are lauding the results of the initiative, which was set up to help the recipients combat organized crime and help areas impacted by related violence."


•    Wendy Davis would have vetoed $5 billion cuts to public schools, not defended them like Greg Abbott (The Dallas Morning News): "Democrat Wendy Davis told Attorney General Greg Abbott on Wednesday that she would have vetoed billions of dollars in cuts to public schools rather than defend them in court as Abbott has done. At issue are $5 billion in spending cuts for public education by the Legislature in 2011."

•    The math on Alameel’s Senate bid against Cornyn (The Dallas Morning News): "Today, a top political handicapper, Nathan Gonzalez of the Rothenberg Political Report, took a tongue in cheek look at just how much [DavidAlameel might have to spend, based on his campaign last year for Congress in the newly drawn 33d District. His finding: $2 billion. ... His $2 billion calculation was based on outdated figures for how much Alameel spent last year. The corrected figure is even more dramatic. At $2,073 per vote, that’s $4.67 billion. Dr. Alameel, you have your work cut out for you, sir."

•    New Obamacare weapon for GOP: Doctors (Politico): "Get ready for the next line of attack from the GOP on Obamacare: good luck keeping your doctor. As other controversies surrounding the law begin to fade, House Republicans are increasingly focused on President Barack Obama’s pledge that 'if you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor.'”

•    NSA tracking cellphone locations worldwide, Snowden documents show (The Washington Post): "The National Security Agency is gathering nearly 5 billion records a day on the whereabouts of cellphones around the world, according to top-secret documents and interviews with U.S. intelligence officials, enabling the agency to track the movements of individuals — and map their relationships — in ways that would have been previously unimaginable."

•    ‘Extremely dangerous’ radioactive material stolen in Mexican truck heist: Could be used to build a dirty bomb (The Associated Press): "A cargo truck hauling extremely dangerous radioactive material from used medical equipment was stolen from a gas station in central Mexico, and authorities sent out an alert in six central states and the capital to find it, Mexican officials said Wednesday."

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Health care Politics Barack Obama Greg Abbott Wendy Davis