Jay Root Reporter

Jay Root is a native of Liberty. He never knew any reporters growing up, and he has never taken a journalism class in his life. But somehow he got hooked on the news business. It all started when Root walked into the offices of The Daily Texan, his college newspaper, during his last year at the University of Texas in 1987. He couldn't resist the draw: it was the biggest collection of misfits ever assembled. After graduating, he took a job at a Houston chemical company and soon realized it wasn't for him. Root applied for an unpaid internship at the Houston Post in 1990, and it turned into a full-time job that same year. He has been a reporter ever since. Root has covered natural disasters, live music and Texas politics — not necessarily in that order. He was Austin bureau chief of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram for a dozen years, most of them good. He also covered politics and the Legislature for The Associated Press before joining the staff of the Tribune.Root is the author of “Oops! A Diary From The 2012 Campaign Trail,” an insider’s account of Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s dramatic collapse in the 2012 presidential race. The book was released in September, 2012.

Recent Contributions

Abortion Opponents Criticize Patrick's Past Investment

Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and Sen. Dan Patrick in the Senate chamber as political drama unfolds at the Texas Capitol in the last hour of the 83rd Texas Legislature's first special session.
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and Sen. Dan Patrick in the Senate chamber as political drama unfolds at the Texas Capitol in the last hour of the 83rd Texas Legislature's first special session.

Dan Patrick has made his opposition to abortion a centerpiece of his campaign for lieutenant governor. But two prominent abortion opponents are criticizing the Houston senator for once owning stock in the maker of the "morning after" pill. 

An Announcement From Wendy Davis, Sort Of

State Sen. Wendy Davis, flanked by her father, Jerry Russell, and her two daughters, delivering her victory speech at the Fort Worth Hilton on Nov. 6, 2012.
State Sen. Wendy Davis, flanked by her father, Jerry Russell, and her two daughters, delivering her victory speech at the Fort Worth Hilton on Nov. 6, 2012.

Sen. Wendy Davis will announce her future political plans on Oct. 3. Davis has said she will run either for re-election or for Texas governor, but most signs are pointing toward the latter.

On Immigration, Cruz Aims for Middle Ground

Senator Ted Cruz held a press conference at the Anzalduas International Bridge in Mission surrounded by a group of local ranchers who told the senator they have been impacted by poor border security.
Senator Ted Cruz held a press conference at the Anzalduas International Bridge in Mission surrounded by a group of local ranchers who told the senator they have been impacted by poor border security.

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz has been an ardent and highly visible opponent of giving undocumented immigrants a way to become U.S. citizens. He is advocating a middle ground — legalization and more visas without citizenship. 

Wendy Davis Postpones Announcement on Political Future

Crowds gather outside the Senate hallway to hear State Sen. Wendy Davis after the midnight drama that killed abortion legislation in the last hour of the 83rd Texas legislature's first called special session.
Crowds gather outside the Senate hallway to hear State Sen. Wendy Davis after the midnight drama that killed abortion legislation in the last hour of the 83rd Texas legislature's first called special session.

Texans will have to wait a little longer to find out if Wendy Davis will run for governor. The state senator said Wednesday she is postponing her decision until late September while she cares for her ailing father. 

Behind the Scenes at Battleground Texas

Travis County Democratic Party volunteers make calls to voters on Election Day from the coordinated campaign headquarters in Austin, Texas.
Travis County Democratic Party volunteers make calls to voters on Election Day from the coordinated campaign headquarters in Austin, Texas.
Texas Weekly

The office measures about 300 square feet and the mismatched, rickety furniture inside looks like leftovers from a charity garage sale. But the headquarters of Battleground Texas is humming with activity.

Cruz Looking for Like-Minded Senate Candidates

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz speaking at the 2013 Conservative Political Action Conference in National Harbor, Md., on March 16, 2013.
U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz speaking at the 2013 Conservative Political Action Conference in National Harbor, Md., on March 16, 2013.

Ted Cruz saw his fortunes rise after picking up endorsements from like-minded conservatives in Washington. Now he is a hot commodity himself, as a potential 2016 presidential candidate and a potential kingmaker in other Senate races.

Cruz: Americans Could Get "Addicted" to Obamacare

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, speaking at the 2013 Young Americans for Liberty National Convention at George Mason University in Arlington, Va., on July 31, 2013.
U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, speaking at the 2013 Young Americans for Liberty National Convention at George Mason University in Arlington, Va., on July 31, 2013.

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz has come home to Texas to promote his long-shot bid to defund "Obamacare," warning Tea Party activists in Kingwood Monday that they have only a few months to stop the health care reform law.