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New Senate Poll Shows Possible Runoff

The David Dewhurst campaign is discounting a new statewide poll that shows the Lt. Governor with just a single digit lead and headed for a likely run-off election in his bid for the US Senate race.

The University of Texas-Texas Tribune Poll shows Dewhurst with support from 40 percent of likely Republican primary voters, followed by Ted Cruz with 31, and former Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert with 17 percent.

But the margin of error in the poll is high and the Dewhurst campaign says those surveyed are not representative of GOP voters.

The poll also shows a likely runoff between former State Representative Paul Sadler and Sean Hubbard for the Senate Democratic nomination.

PDF: University Of Texas / Texas Tribune Poll

Shelley Kofler, KERA News

Early Voting Behind

Early voting in Dallas County for this Texas primary is running behind 2010. Elections Administrator Toni Pippins-Poole says it’s all about the campaign calendar.

Pippins-Poole: In talking with the different parties, they were thinking that because it’s so late that many of the voters would not be coming out.

The Texas Primary is usually in March, but the battle over redistricting pushed it to May 29th – after many  other states have already cast ballots in the presidential primaries. That lessens the impact of Texas voters.

But there are key races on the Democrat and Republican primary ballots, including U.S. Senator and contested North Texas congressional races.

BJ Austin, KERA News

At least 50 holiday miles for 2.8 million Texans

AAA Texas is estimating 2.8 million Texans will travel at least 50 miles from home during the upcoming Memorial Day holiday weekend.

That's up 2 percent from a year ago.

Travel by car is the most common transportation mode, with nearly 2.5 million Texans hitting the roads for destinations more than 50 miles away. The motor club said Monday another 213,000 Texas residents will be flying and another 138,000 boarding buses, trains or cruise ships.

The average round trip for them is 580 miles and the AAA estimates the average family will spend $533 during the Thursday through Monday holiday period.


Fort Hood bomb plot suspect wears mask in court

A soldier accused of plotting to bomb Fort Hood troops is being made to wear a mask during jury selection at his federal trial.

Pfc. Naser Jason Abdo is accused of biting through his lip and spitting blood on two authorities escorting him after a court hearing last month. He's also accused of spitting blood on a jailer.

In court Monday, several U.S. marshals standing near Abdo wore protective glasses. Abdo wore an oval mask covering his nose and mouth.

McLennan County Sheriff Larry Lynch says he can't comment on why Abdo is wearing a mask. A gag order prevents attorneys from discussing the case publicly.

Abdo is accused of planning to bomb a Killeen restaurant filled with Fort Hood soldiers and shoot any survivors last summer.


Slight earth tremor detected in East Texas

A slight earthquake was registered in East Texas near the Louisiana border, four days after a sharper shock struck the area. The U.S. Geological Survey reports a 2.7 magnitude quake was registered about 1:30 p.m. Sunday just over a miles south of the town of Timpson, 152 miles east-southeast of Dallas.

A dispatcher for the Shelby County Sheriff's Office in nearby Center said no damage or injuries were reported.

A moderate, 4.3-magnitude earthquake had rattled the area early Thursday. A Shelby County sheriff's dispatcher that morning reported fallen dishes and broken windows from the quake, but the only injury was an elderly woman who fell out of bed and cut her arm.


Woman, 76, set on fire in Dallas-area robbery

A 76-year-old grandmother working at a suburban Dallas convenience store is in a hospital after a robber emptied her cash register, doused her with a flammable liquid and set her on fire.

Authorities haven't identified the woman but customers at the store in Garland tell Dallas TV station WFAA she lived nearby and had worked there more than a decade.

She was able to briefly describe her attacker Sunday morning and a 36-year-old man was arrested a short time later after trying to break into some homes.

Officers on patrol spotted the fire inside the store and pulled up just as the woman, engulfed in flames, staggered outside. Police put out the flames. She's been unable to speak with authorities because of her injuries.