Ben Philpott Reporter

Ben Philpott is a senior reporter for KUT-FM, Austin's National Public Radio affiliate. He has been covering state politics and dozens of other topics for the station since 2002, during which time he has been recognized for outstanding radio journalism by the Radio and Television News Directors Association, Public Radio News Directors Incorporated, the Houston Press Club and the Texas Associated Press Broadcasters. Before moving to Texas, he worked in public radio in Birmingham and Tuscaloosa, Ala., and at several television stations in Alabama and Tennessee. Born in New York City and raised in Chattanooga, Tenn., Philpott graduated from the University of Alabama with a degree in broadcast journalism.

Recent Contributions

2nd GOP Governors Race Debate

At the second debate between the three Republicans running for governor, the incumbent was on the defense, while his challengers tried their best to score points without making mistakes. Ben Philpott, who’s covering the race for KUT News and the Tribune, reports on how the hour-long event could affect the final month of campaigning.

Texas Juvenile Justice System and Mental Health

Experts from across the country were at the Texas Capitol this week to talk about an increase in the number of children in the nation’s juvenile justice system diagnosed with mental health problems. Ben Philpott, who's covering Texas politics and policy for KUT News and the Tribune, filed this report.

TX Lawmakers Changing State Arbitration Laws

Lawmakers have begun the long process of reviewing the state's rules on arbitration — in particular, the way it's used in complaints between homebuilders and owners. Ben Philpott, who covers politics and policy for KUT News and the Tribune, filed this report.

What do Texans Think the State of the State Is Now

In his State of the Union message tonight, Barack Obama is expected to touch on dozens of topics, including the subjects of two high-priority and high-drama bills currently before lawmakers: health care and cap and trade. Ben Philpott, who's covering Texas politics for KUT News and the Tribune, reports on what some interested Texans would like to hear the President say.

Texans Give Their State of the State

Governors across the country have been delivering their state report cards in January — but not in Texas, where the State of the State address is only given during odd-numbered years, when the Legislature is in session. Ben Philpott, reporting on politics for KUT News and the Tribune, asked people from different sectors of the economy to offer their own outlook for Texas in 2010.

SCOTUS Allows Corporate Cash In Elections

The U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in a federal campaign finance case could have an immediate affect on state elections here in Texas, where a ban on corporate contributions has been on the books. Ben Philpott, who's covering the governor's race for KUT News and the Tribune, filed this report.

The Spigot Turns On

The U.S. Supreme Court freed corporations and unions from a century-old ban on political spending Thursday, ruling that restrictions on their electioneering expenditures violate their First Amendment Rights. Ramsey explains what the ruling says; Philpott, covering politics for KUT News and the Tribune, reports on how it will affect a state like Texas, which has long had a corporate cash ban in effect.

Sharon Keller Gets Slap On Wrist

The Chief Justice of the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals should not be reprimanded for actions that led to the execution of a death row inmate in 2007: That's the opinion of the judge who presided over her ethics trial last year. Ben Philpott, reporting for KUT News and the Tribune, filed this story.

GOP Governors Race Debate

Three candidates for the Republican Party nomination for Governor faced off last night in the first debate of the 2010 election. It’s been months since Governor Rick Perry and Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison announced they’d be running for governor in 2010. The campaign machinery for both have been pumping out information throughout 2009. But for many voters – last night’s debate was their first chance to kick the tires and figure out how the candidates stand on a handful of topics. Ben Philpott, who's covering the Texas governor's race for KUT News and the Texas Tribune, reports on what differences emerged from last night’s debate.

GOP Governors Race Debate

Rick Perry, Kay Bailey Hutchison and Debra Medina will meet on stage tonight at the University of North Texas campus in Denton for the first gubernatorial debate. While their interplay will only last an hour, putting the show together took weeks, with dozens of people working on details from set design to question preparation. Ben Philpott, who’s covering the governor’s race for KUT News and the Tribune, filed this audio postcard featuring people who make a career out of getting ready for the big night.

TX Census Could Add New Seats & Redistricting

Census offices across Texas are gearing up to collect data for the 2010 census. Population growth in Texas is expected to bring the state 3 to 4 new congressional seats. Ben Philpott, who's covering politics for KUT News and the Tribune, says it will also lead to another round of redistricting battles between Democrats and Republicans.