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Wade Goodwyn

Wade Goodwyn is a NPR National Desk Correspondent covering Texas and the surrounding states.

Reporting for NPR since 1991, Goodwyn covers a wide range of issues from politics and music to breaking news and crime and punishment. His reports have ranged from weather calamities, religion, and corruption, to immigration, obituaries, business, and high profile court cases. Texas has it all, and Goodwyn has covered it.

Over the last 15 years, Goodwyn has reported on many of the nation's top stories. He's covered the implosion of Enron, the trials of Jeff Skilling and Kenneth Lay, and the prosecution of polygamist Warren Jeffs. Goodwyn's reporting has included the siege of the Branch Davidians in Waco, Texas, the bombing of the federal building in Oklahoma City, and the trials of Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols in Denver. He covered the Olympic Games in Atlanta and the school shootings in Paducah Ky., Jonesboro, Ark., and Columbine High School in Littleton, Colo.

Among his most recent work has been the wrongful prosecution and conviction of black and Hispanic citizens in Texas and Louisiana. With American and Southwest Airlines headquartered in his backyard, coverage of the airline industry is also a constant for Goodwyn.

As Texas has moved to the vanguard in national Republican politics, Goodwyn has been at the front line as what happens politically in Texas, which is often a bellwether of the coming national political debate. He has covered the state's politicians dominating the national stage, including George W. Bush, Tom Delay and rising GOP star Texas Governor Rick Perry

Before coming to NPR, Goodwyn was a political consultant in New York City.

Goodwyn graduated from the University of Texas with a degree in history.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: A musician's life can be difficult. Perhaps no place knows this better than the city of Austin, Texas. It's where thousands of musicians have launched their careers. And for the last 20 years, the city's community of artists has subsidized mental health care for Austin musicians and their families through something called the SIMS Foundation. It's named for one of Austin's young musicians who took his...

That the freshman senator from Texas had a good night onstage at the latest Republican debate surprises nobody anymore — Ted Cruz is poised, articulate and smart. He's gaining ground in the race for the Republican presidential nomination, and he's positioning himself to capture supporters from Donald Trump or Ben Carson, should either falter. There's still a long way to go in this contest, but Cruz and his campaign are well-funded, well-organized and confident in his ability to outlast and...

In Texas, one of the most conservative right-to-work states in the country, a church-based organization has begun to make headway in enacting a "living wage" for San Antonio city employees. In addition to having no state-mandated minimum wage for the private sector, the Legislature has made it illegal for any Texas city or local jurisdiction to pass its own minimum wage. But after a year of intense organizing and lobbying, the Communities Organized for Public Service and the Metro Alliance ...

To walk into Ted Cruz's holding room at the National Religious Liberties Conference in Des Moines, Iowa, on Friday afternoon was to walk into quite the group of happy campers. With a friendly motion and a quick smile, the Republican Senator from Texas, looking relaxed in short sleeves, his foot up on the coffee table, waves you over to the chair beside him. It's just the tiniest bit unnerving, the notion flashes across your mind, "He knows I'm with NPR, right?" Yes, everyone knows who you are...

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript ARI SHAPIRO, HOST: We're going to visit a place now that has become a big part of the debate over race and policing. That's Waller County, Texas. It's where Sandra Bland was stopped for a traffic violation. Bland was black. She was pulled from her car by a white officer and handcuffed for resisting an order. She later died in custody. Authorities say she committed suicide. Waller County is also where a black city...

When you don't know the facts of a given incident, it's human nature to attempt to fill them in yourself. But in the case of Bowe Bergdahl, there's no way you could concoct the narrative the Army's two-month investigation uncovered. According to the testimony of Maj. Gen. Kenneth Dahl, who led the 22-member team during the investigation, Bergdahl, who was a private first class at the time, quietly slipped away from his bunk and sneaked out of Forward Operating Post Mest in eastern Afghanistan...

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript ARUN RATH, HOST: The fate of Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl is now in the hands of his superior officers. An Article 32 hearing was held this week at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio. That's the preceding that will determine whether or not Bergdahl will face a court-martial on charges of desertion and misbehavior before the enemy. If convicted, Bergdahl could be sentenced to life in prison. NPR's Wade Goodwyn has been covering the...

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: A major general in charge of investigating the case of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl testified today that he believes the wayward soldier should not be sentenced to prison. Now, this contradicts the government's depiction of Bergdahl as a cowardly deserter. Maj. Gen. Kenneth Dahl said the sergeant left his unit as a publicity stunt to try to draw attention to the platoon's poor leadership. From San Antonio, NPR's...

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST: At Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, a hearing is underway to decide whether Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl should face a court-martial. The charges - desertion and misbehavior before the enemy. Bergdahl went missing in June 2009 from his platoon in Afghanistan and was captured by the Taliban. If convicted, he could be sentenced to life in prison. From San Antonio, NPR's Wade Goodwyn. WADE GOODWYN, BYLINE: Capt....

Army Sgt. Robert "Bowe" Bergdahl will be in a military courtroom in Texas Thursday, for the start of a hearing that will determine if he will face a court-martial on desertion and other charges. He could face a sentence of life in prison. Whether the military proceeds with a court-martial will hinge, in part, on the events of the night of June 30, 2009. That's when Bergdahl went missing from his unit's outpost in a remote part of eastern Afghanistan. Initially, Sgt. Bergdahl claimed in a...

Donald Trump's rallies tend to feel more like a playoff game or music concert than electoral politics. There's an expectation of entertainment — older couples are dressed up, and people are friendly and excited. Monday night's large rally at a basketball arena in Dallas was no exception. "He's telling me everything I want to hear. I'm for change; I'm fed up with the 30 years of empty suits in Washington," said Brian Markum, an energy consultant who came to the rally with his wife. Outside the...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZCyTQEANlmM The seeds of calamity for Rick Perry were sown years ago in the fertile political ground that Texas became for the Republican Party. Perry suspended his campaign for president Friday evening, becoming the first candidate this year to get out of the crowded race for president. It was his second failed bid for the White House after leaving as Texas' longest-serving governor. But his 14 years as governor, and the ease of his reelections in what became a...

In Texas, fewer high school boys are playing football. And while there may be some concern about head injuries, one young athlete says the trend has more to do with demands on his time and the push for players to specialize in one sport. Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: The state of Texas has long been the king of high school athletics in this country. More boys and girls participate in some sort of high school sport in Texas than any...

NPR's Wade Goodwyn sends this postcard on a story that's getting attention in Dallas. The strange story of Dallas District Attorney Susan Hawk actually begins several years ago when the previously highly-regarded Dallas District Attorney Craig Watkins began to struggle managing his office. Watkins was the first black DA in Texas and he quickly made a national reputation by finding and releasing men who'd been wrongly convicted of rape in Dallas. Watkins, who started out as a defense attorney,...

Tuesday, Rick Perry's campaign announced it could no longer pay his staffers around the country and released them to find other work. His fundraising had dried up. It's potentially an ignominious end to a noteworthy political career that spanned more than 30 years. Fundraising acumen was considered one of Perry's strong points four years ago when he belatedly announced his run for the White House and raised $17 million in the first seven weeks of his campaign. In 2015, it's a different story....

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript DAVID GREENE, HOST: What do you think of when you think of Dallas? (SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "DALLAS THEME SONG") GREENE: OK, yes, but here's something that maybe didn't come to mind. The city has one of the largest urban forests in the country. NPR's Wade Goodwyn takes us to Great Trinity Forest as part of our series Hidden Places. WADE GOODWYN, BYLINE: I'm standing under one of the largest oak trees I've ever seen in my life....

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: The executive board of the Boy Scouts of America has ended its outright ban on gay scout leaders today, but there's a caveat. NPR's Wade Goodwyn reports that the resolution allows each scout unit to decide for itself whether to accept gay adult leaders. WADE GOODWYN, BYLINE: Perhaps no organization has been more roiled by the nation's debate over gay rights than the Boy Scouts of America. Two months...

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: The 14th Amendment guarantees the right of citizenship for any child born on U.S. soil, regardless of her parents' legal standing. But Texas is refusing to issue birth certificates to some children born in the United States. Hundreds of immigrant families are being denied birth certificates because Texas no longer accepts the parents' photo IDs. And, as NPR's Wade Goodwyn reports, undocumented...

Two days after Dylann Roof allegedly murdered nine African-Americans during a Bible study at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, S.C., family members of the victims confronted Roof in a bond hearing. "I will never talk with her ever again. I will never be able to hold her again. But I forgive you," said the daughter of 70-year-old victim Ethel Lance. In the days that followed the hearing, the mercy demonstrated by the families set the public tone among Charleston's leaders, both black and white...

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: The funeral for South Carolina state senator Clemente Pinckney was held this afternoon. The pastor of the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church was murdered during bible study along with eight other black parishioners. President Obama, the first lady, Vice President Biden and his wife attended the ceremony. It was held at TD Arena on the College of Charleston campus. NPR's Wade Goodwyn was there...

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

At the hands of the Texas Legislature, the last four years have been long for supporters of abortion rights. The next blow lands on July 1, when a new law will go into effect in Texas and drastically reduce access to abortion services — likely leaving just nine clinics that perform abortions open in the entire state. The controversial law, passed in 2013, requires clinics to meet tougher building standards and doctors to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital. A group of abortion...

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: Rick Perry is running again. The former Texas governor officially launched his second presidential bid today. Perry insists that the gaffes of his first run for the Republican nomination are behind him and that he's now ready to be the next president of the United States. Here's NPR's Wade Goodwyn from Dallas. WADE GOODWYN, BYLINE: With his black frames and mature, rugged good looks, Rick Perry is...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M583sJKFFh8 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CtDBp1OrCwI http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a3Xjrs2mqqE This post has been updated to note that Perry has entered the 2016 presidential race. Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry released a video Thursday morning strongly suggesting that he's running again for president. The video ends with a "Perry President" logo and notes that it is "Paid for by Perry for President Inc." His website has also been rebranded ahead of his...

Dallas's Parkland Hospital treats a lot of people without health insurance. On a November day in 1963, emergency room doctors at this county hospital frantically tried to save an American president who could not be saved. These days, emergency room doctors frantically try to treat 240,000 patients every year. "So you can see we have every treatment area filled up. Beds are in the hallways and the rooms are all full," says Dr. John Pease , chief of emergency services. In Texas, about 1 in 4...

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript DAVID GREENE, HOST: We're digging deeper into the debate over the Affordable Care Act. A key part of that law has been expanding Medicaid to extend health coverage to more uninsured adults. Mostly it's working-poor Americans who don't make enough to participate in the health insurance exchanges. RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST: In all, 29 states have expanded Medicaid. But when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2012 that the federal...

The Texas Legislature is sending a message this week on the subject of same-sex marriage. And that message is: Hell no — again. The bill that just got initial approval in the Texas Senate would protect clergy from having to conduct any marriage ceremony or perform any service that would violate their sacred beliefs. "We want to make sure they are not ever coerced into performing a marriage ceremony that would violate their sincerely held religious beliefs," State Sen. Craig Estes told NPR....

In the May 3 "Draw Muhammad" attack in Garland, Texas, there were some loose ends that got cleared up Monday by local police chief Mitch Bates. Elton Simpson and Nadir Soofi from Phoenix were killed by Garland police officers after the two men drove from Arizona and opened fire at the event featuring cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad. As NPR reported the next day , the FBI sent Garland police a bulletin about Elton Simpson in the hours just before that attack. But Garland police repeatedly...

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript DAVID GREENE, HOST: Let's turn now to the state of Texas, where Governor Greg Abbott has been in the news recently after he ordered the Texas State Guard to monitor U.S. military exercises there. Rumors have been flying in some corners of the Internet that those training exercises scheduled for this summer are actually a cover for a military takeover and the imposition of martial law. Now the governor is backtracking a bit...

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: And now more on the city of Garland, Texas, where Sunday's attack took place. Garland is a suburb of Dallas, home to a quarter of a million people. As NPR's Wade Goodwyn tells us, it was a place unaccustomed to national and international controversies, at least until earlier this year. WADE GOODWYN, BYLINE: Pamela Geller, leader of the American Freedom Defense Initiative, says she didn't pick Garland...

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