Morgan Smith Reporter

Morgan Smith reports on politics and education for the Tribune, which she joined in November 2009. She writes about the effects of the state budget, school finance reform, accountability and testing in Texas public schools. Her political coverage has included congressional and legislative races, as well as Gov. Rick Perry's presidential campaign, which she followed to Iowa and New Hampshire. In 2013, she received a National Education Writers Association award for "Death of a District," a series on school closures. After earning a bachelor's degree in English from Wellesley College, she moved to Austin in 2008 to enter law school at the University of Texas. A San Antonio native, her work has also appeared in Slate, where she spent a year as an editorial intern in Washington D.C.

Recent Contributions

Defamation Suit Tests Texas' Anti-SLAPP Statute

David Barton, left, of WallBuilders talks with a delegate as he poses for photos at a Texas Eagle Forum reception at the Texas Republican Convention in Fort Worth on June 7, 2012.
David Barton, left, of WallBuilders talks with a delegate as he poses for photos at a Texas Eagle Forum reception at the Texas Republican Convention in Fort Worth on June 7, 2012.

A defamation lawsuit filed by WallBuilders founder David Barton has become an early test of new tort reform legislation intended to protect free speech. 

At Convention, Romney Booed, Dewhurst Gets Some Cheers

Lt. Governor David Dewhurst points at a delegate that interrupted his speech at the Texas Republican Convention on June 8, 2012.
Lt. Governor David Dewhurst points at a delegate that interrupted his speech at the Texas Republican Convention on June 8, 2012.

After some at the GOP state convention booed Thursday at Gov. Rick Perry's mention of Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, he got a mostly positive reception Friday during his own speech. That wasn't the case for Mitt Romney, whose name drew jeers from the audience during a speech from Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison.

Perry to GOP Convention: I'm Not Riding Into Sunset

Gov. Rick Perry on May 29, 2012, watching television returns after speaking at the party for Charles Schwertner's victory in the Texas Senate race for District 5.
Gov. Rick Perry on May 29, 2012, watching television returns after speaking at the party for Charles Schwertner's victory in the Texas Senate race for District 5.

Gov. Rick Perry, speaking at the state’s Republican convention on Thursday, fueled speculation that he’ll run for re-election, saying he was “not riding into the sunset” but “mounting up for the next operation.”