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Houston Newsmakers for Sept. 9: Election season heating up

Rice University expert weighs in on critical Texas races

HOUSTON – The polls predicting a close race between Sen. Ted Cruz (R) and challenger U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D) are not what they seem.  

“They probably aren't giving us an accurate measure of who is actually going to be voting in November,” said Mark Jones, a Rice University political scientist and fellow at the Baker Institute for Public Policy. “They’re probably over-estimating the number of Democrats and under-estimating Republicans.”

“Right now, Cruz still remains the strong favorite," he said. Jones also weighs in on the Trump effect for Republican candidates, including the potentially close races locally in congressional districts 2, 7 and 22.

'Soldiers’ Angels' provides comfort for active military and veterans

It started with a few care packages sent overseas to loved ones in the military. Now, it is a Texas-based national organization that supports active duty and veteran military personnel. "Soldiers’ Angels" is active helping the Houston Veterans Affairs. “We visit patients. We provide goods for the homeless veterans at the homeless Stand Downs that the VA supports,” said Amy Palmer, CEO of Soldiers’ Angels.

“We serve a lot of low-income veterans that are in need of food assistance, can’t afford to eat at the cafeteria at the VA and need vouchers for that," she said. Palmer discusses how much more they plan to do in the Houston area and the critical need for volunteers on this week’s Houston Newsmakers with Khambrel Marshall. 

Barbara Bush Houston Literacy Foundation plans growth, family involvement

The Barbara Bush Literacy Foundation is celebrating its fifth year and plans to continue growing by involving parents more in the lives of their children.

“We’re going to be creating Family Place Centers in eight Harris County public libraries where there will be staff trained at the libraries and specialty resources," said Julie Baker Finck, president of the Barbara Bush Houston Literacy Foundation. “It’s where parents with children ages birth to 4 can go in and get support and training.”  

Baker Finck says it’s part of a three-part strategic plan to continue the legacy started by the late Barbara Bush. More on the plan ahead and the challenges to increase literacy in our community on Houston Newsmakers Sunday at 10:30 a.m.

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