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Ben Philpott

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Christmas Break

The Texas governor's race has already taken off. Three of the four best-funded candidates have already splashed TV and/or radio ads across the state. Some people estimate $1 million a day could get spent on the primary campaigns between the first of the year and the March 2 primary. But you'll likely see nothing right around Christmas. Ben Philpott, covering the 2010 elections for KUT News and the Tribune, filed this report.

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With Friends Like These...

A Florida judicial ethics panel ruled that judges and lawyers who might appear before them in court may not ethically "friend" each other on social networking sites like Facebook. Texas has no such recommendations — and there's no real consensus here on how social networking should or should not be used. Ben Philpott, who covers politics for KUT News and the Tribune, filed this report.

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Kinky on Getting Out

After announcing he'll drop his bid for governor and run for agriculture commissioner, Kinky Friedman talked with Ben Philpott (reporting for KUT News and the Tribune) about his decision to change races — and his unsuccessful attempt to get rival candidate Farouk Shami to seek a different office as well.

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Economic Campaigning

Texas budget writers are hoping December will ring in stronger retail sales — after getting the news Friday that sales tax collections were down 14 percent from this November to last. The state’s economy is always a hot topic in the governor’s race. Ben Philpott is covering the Texas governor's race for KUT News and the Texas Tribune. He takes a look at how the economy's playing so far.

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 Jacob Villanueva

It's Still the Economy, Stupid

Sales taxes are down and the recession in Texas hasn't bottomed, so financial concerns will almost certainly factor into the governor's race. Ben Philpott, covering that contest for KUT News and the Tribune, takes a look.

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Shami's Job Train

Democratic gubernatorial Candidate Farouk Shami has kicked off his campaign tour of Texas. The self-proclaimed billionaire spoke with reporters Wednesday afternoon about his goals for Texas. His plan focuses on one specific theme. Ben Philpott is covering the Texas governor's Race for KUT News and the Trib.

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Cap and Trade on the Campaign Trail

Rick Perry attacked the EPA’s decision yesterday to declare carbon dioxide a public danger, arguing that the ruling lacks scientific evidence. The EPA's move could propel the cost of carbon reduction onto the list of issues in play in the governor’s race. Ben Philpott, who's covering the 2010 election for KUT News and the Trib, filed this report.

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Audio: Cap and Tirade

Rick Perry attacked the Environmental Protection Agency’s decision yesterday to declare carbon dioxide a public danger, arguing that the ruling lacks scientific evidence. The EPA's move could propel the cost of carbon reduction onto the list of issues in play in the governor’s race.

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 Bob Daemmrich

Audio: White Hits the Road

After Houston mayor Bill White joined the race for governor late last week, one of his first stops was Austin, a Democratic stronghold that made for a nice, safe place to start his campaign.

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White Stumps Austin

Houston Mayor Bill White has hit the campaign trail after joining the race for governor late last week. One of his first stops was Austin. The Capital city is considered a democratic stronghold. And made for a nice safe place to start his run for governor. Ben Philpott is covering the Texas governor's race for the Texas Tribune and KUT News.

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The "Other" Medical Shortage

Representatives from medical schools and the Seton hospital network were in Austin this week to talk about increasing education opportunities in Texas. The meeting with civic and business leaders focused on expanding graduate school capacity — with the hope it could increase healthcare access in Central Texas. But a shortage of medical care could have a far reaching effect on the state’s economy — in a very unexpected way. Ben Philpott is reporting for KUT News and the Texas Tribune.

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RINO Hunters

Today is the first day for people wanting to run in the Democratic or Republican primary to file their candidacy. The month-long period is often a mix of the expected — like Governor Perry filing to run for re-election — and the unexpected. Houston Mayor Bill White running for governor could set off a chain reaction among Democrats to enter other statewide races, for instance. But one of the most interesting phenomena this year is the number of so called Tea Party Republicans entering the primaries. Ben Philpott, covering the Texas governor's race for KUT News and The Texas Tribune, has this report.

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RINO Hunters

One of the most interesting phenomena of the 2010 election cycle is the number of so-called Tea Party Republicans entering GOP primaries to challenge incumbents they consider RINOs: Republicans in Name Only. Ben Philpott, who's covering the Texas governor's race for KUT news and the Trib, has this report.

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 Bob Daemmrich

Help from Above?

This holiday weekend, Democrats up and down the ballot are giving thanks for the prospect of a Bill White gubernatorial candidacy.

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Schieffer Calls it Quits

There's been a major shake-up in the race for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination. Former U.S. Ambassador to Japan Tom Schieffer has dropped out of the race, and he and several other Democrats hope Houston Mayor Bill White will jump in. For the first time, White says he's considering it.

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