Jim Henson Pollster

Jim Henson directs the Texas Politics project and teaches in the Department of Government at The University of Texas, where he also received a doctorate. He helped design public interest multimedia for the Benton Foundation in Washington, D.C., in the late 1990s and has written about politics in general-interest and academic publications. He also serves as associate director of the College of Liberal Arts Instructional Technology Services unit at UT, where he has helped produce several award-winning instructional media projects. In 2008, he and Daron Shaw, a fellow UT government professor, established the first statewide, publicly available internet survey of public opinion in Texas using matched random sampling. He lives in Austin, where he also serves as a member of the City of Austin Ethics Review Commission.

Recent Contributions

Yeah, He Lost, But...

Gov. Rick Perry delivering his stump speech during an early morning campaign stop in Sioux City, Iowa, on Oct. 8, 2011.
Gov. Rick Perry delivering his stump speech during an early morning campaign stop in Sioux City, Iowa, on Oct. 8, 2011.
Texas Weekly

Rick Perry is still the Republican governor of a strongly Republican state. He controls the executive branch, maintains strong ties with business, has relatively weak opponents, and has run circles around the media.

The Morning After: Perry Returns from the Trail

Gov. Rick Perry at his last campaign stop of 2011 in Boone, Iowa, on Dec. 31, 2011.
Gov. Rick Perry at his last campaign stop of 2011 in Boone, Iowa, on Dec. 31, 2011.
Texas Weekly

When the Legislature decamped from Austin in July, there was a sense of order in Texas politics. And yet, as Rick Perry returns a mere seven months later, conditions on the ground in Texas border on the chaotic.

Inside, Outside: Damning with Faint Praise

Gov. Rick Perry while leaving the Republican presidential debate at Dartmouth College on Oct. 11, 2011.
Gov. Rick Perry while leaving the Republican presidential debate at Dartmouth College on Oct. 11, 2011.
Texas Weekly

If the October 2011 University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll captured Texans in a lukewarm mood about Gov. Rick Perry’s presidential bid, the Texas Tribune/Texas Weekly Inside Intelligence survey found Texas insiders edging into downright cranky territory in their assessments of the governor.

Guest Column: Dems Face Hurdles Winning Over Public

State Rep. Sylvester Turner (c) raises questions on SB1811 as colleagues State Rep. Armando Walle (l), D-Houston, State Rep. Ron Reynolds, D-Missouri City, and State Rep. Mark Strama (r), D-Austin, listen in the evening of May 29, 2011.
State Rep. Sylvester Turner (c) raises questions on SB1811 as colleagues State Rep. Armando Walle (l), D-Houston, State Rep. Ron Reynolds, D-Missouri City, and State Rep. Mark Strama (r), D-Austin, listen in the evening of May 29, 2011.

Republican skepticism about public education spending joined with the governor’s determination to hold the line on spending, including on public education, is likely to carry the day — whether it takes a few hours or 30 more days.