News in Brief: Texas Gets Four More Congressional Seats, and More

Tuesday, 21 December 2010 12:04 By Nadia Prupis, t r u t h o u t | News in Brief | name.

Texas Gets Four More Congressional Seats

Census Bureau data released this morning shows that high population growth over the past decade has garnered Texas four more seats in Congress in the state's biggest political gain in a century, Dallas Morning News said. Texas previously held 32 seats. "The 2010 Census will serve as a backbone for our political and economic system for years to come," said commerce secretary Gary Locke. In addition to Texas' four seats, Arizona, Georgia, South Carolina, Utah, Washington, and Nevada will each gain a congressional district, while some states will lose seats due to reapportionment. The eight that will fall back by one congressional districts are Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, Pennsylvania, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan and New Jersey.

One in Three Working Families Is "Low Income"

The Wall Street Journal reports that nearly one in three working families earned less than 200 percent of the poverty line last year, according to a study conducted by the Working Poor Families Project (WPFP). By analyzing Census Bureau data, the WPFP study found that more than ten million families earned less than the low-income threshold of $43,512 for a family of four with two children. Report co-author Brandon Roberts said the bad economy has likely forced many households to subsist on one paycheck, stating, "Working families are taking it hard during the great recession. We've got a whole lot of middle-income families, middle-class families that have now fallen back into low-income working families."

NATO Denies Raids

NATO is denying a New York Times article claiming that the US military might raid tribal areas of Pakistan to capture militants, Politico said. While the Times reported that top military commanders feel pressure to step up efforts in capturing militants as the withdrawal deadline approaches, NATO Deputy Chief of Communications Rear Adm. Gregory Smith said, "There is absolutely no truth to reporting in the New York Times that US forces are planning to conduct ground operations into Pakistan."

Civil Rights Groups Seeking Review of Texas Public Education

The Huffington Post reports that two civil rights organizations have requested the Department of Education review public schools in Texas after the state board approved polemic curriculum changes. The Texas NAACP and the Texas League of United Latin American Citizens filed a complaint against the Texas Board of Education on the grounds that the changes "were made with the intention to discriminate" and would stigmatize African-American and Latino students. The board approved a curriculum in May that changed or weakened teachings of the civil rights movement, portraying the Confederacy in a more positive light and showing less support of religious freedom and the United Nations.

Nadia Prupis

Nadia Prupis is Truthout's Media Policy Reporting Fellow.

Last modified on Tuesday, 21 December 2010 15:39