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

Perry Adds New Agency to Chopping Block: SBA

Gov. Rick Perry during the final pitch of his Iowa bus tour at a campaign rally at Hotel Pattee in Perry, Iowa, on Jan. 2, 2012.
Gov. Rick Perry during the final pitch of his Iowa bus tour at a campaign rally at Hotel Pattee in Perry, Iowa, on Jan. 2, 2012.

During a question-and-answer session with voters in South Carolina, Gov. Rick Perry said he would eliminate the Small Business Administration, which provides loans, counseling and other assistance to small businesses.

Candid Perry Comes to Terms With Long Odds

Gov. Rick Perry announces his presidential bid in South Carolina on Aug. 13, 2011.
Gov. Rick Perry announces his presidential bid in South Carolina on Aug. 13, 2011.

Gov. Rick Perry's frenetic campaign schedule suggests he is not thinking much about the moment his presidential run will come to an end. But in an interview before a studio audience Monday in Myrtle Beach, Perry sounded somewhat less certain of victory and finally willing, perhaps, to look beyond a campaign that started off with such hope but quickly went off the rails.

Evangelicals Deliver Blow to Perry

Gov. Rick Perry and his wife, Anita, addressing supporters after his fifth-place finish in the Iowa caucuses on Jan. 3, 2012.
Gov. Rick Perry and his wife, Anita, addressing supporters after his fifth-place finish in the Iowa caucuses on Jan. 3, 2012.

Rick Perry, trying to rescue his presidential campaign in South Carolina, got some unwelcome news Saturday from back home, where influential evangelical leaders threw their support behind former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum.

Perry in South Carolina: Will It End Where It Began?

Republican presidential candidate, Texas Gov. Rick Perry greets supporters as he arrives for a campaign stop at Lizard's Thicket restaurant, Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2012, in Lexington, S.C.
Republican presidential candidate, Texas Gov. Rick Perry greets supporters as he arrives for a campaign stop at Lizard's Thicket restaurant, Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2012, in Lexington, S.C.

Gov. Rick Perry launched his campaign for president exactly five months ago in Charleston, S.C. Once a front-runner in the Palmetto State, Perry is now hoping for a comeback to get some much-needed momentum. 

Perry Rips Romney in South Carolina

Gov. Rick Perry on the campaign trail with Gavin Stanley, 4.
Gov. Rick Perry on the campaign trail with Gavin Stanley, 4.

It’s been a long time since Gov. Rick Perry tore into the presidential front-runner, but on Monday he let Mitt Romney have it. Perry mocked the former Massachusetts governor for saying recently that he sometimes lived with the fear of losing his own job.

For Perry, Quitting is Not an Option

Gov. Rick Perry at a rally on the morning of the Jan. 3, 2012, Iowa caucuses.
Gov. Rick Perry at a rally on the morning of the Jan. 3, 2012, Iowa caucuses.

Here's the problem for the Texas governor after his awful fifth-place showing in Iowa, as the specter of his first defeat has come into focus: He does not really know how to lose.