is a political reporter who focuses on multimedia projects at the Tribune. She previously worked as the state political reporter for Austin's ABC affiliate, KVUE-TV, from 2006 to 2009. She was recognized by the Texas Associated Press Broadcasters three years in a row for her beat reporting on state politics and was named Best TV Reporter Who Can Write by The Austin Chronicle. Before arriving in Austin, she held reporting positions at television stations in Waco; Greenville, S.C.; and Columbia, Mo. She's an evangelist for social media and multimedia journalism — her Political Junkie blog was listed as one of WashingtonPost.com's top Texas political blogs. A native of Plano, she has a degree in broadcast journalism from the University of Missouri.
In this post-election TribCast, Evan, Elise and Ben look back on the election year that was and discuss Gov. Rick Perry's political future and the implications of the massive Republican landslide in the Texas House.
"I don't need lessons on how to be a Republican," Joe Straus said Wednesday morning, responding to claims by his challenger in the Speaker's race, state Rep. Warren Chisum, R-Pampa, that he isn't Republican enough to hold the leadership post.
Gov. Rick Perry addresses hundreds of supporters in Buda after voters re-elected him to an unprecedented third full term in office. Hitting on a familiar theme, Perry said Texans were "tired of big government" and "fed up" with Washington's intrusion into their daily lives.
After it became clear that the early returns were against him, Bill White called on Democratic voters to support Gov. Rick Perry. “All our elected leaders, including our national leadership, deserve respect,” he said.
Rick Perry won his third full term as governor of Texas on Tuesday, defeating former Houston Mayor Bill White by a convincing double-digit margin and positioning himself for a role on the national stage. And he led a Republican army that swept all statewide offices for the fourth election in a row, took out three Democratic U.S. congressmen and was on its way to a nearly two-thirds majority in the Texas House — a mark the GOP hasn't seen since the days following the Civil War.
Be warned: If you're signed up for our instant e-mail alerts, your mobile device will be buzzing a lot this evening. But there's still plenty of time to update or temporarily disable your alert settings.
We'll be chock full of constantly updated content beginning at 7 p.m. CDT, when most of the polls close around the state. Here's a handy guide to the barrage of interactives and information you'll find our site, plus where to watch and listen to your favorite Trib staffers make sense of it all on TV and radio.
At stake in next Tuesday's elections are powerful committee chairmanships in the U.S. House of Representatives, a few of which will likely go to members of the Texas delegation if the GOP does as predicted and wins back the majority. We've built an interactive chart that takes a closer look at which of our Republican congressmen are poised to wield the gavel — Smith? Hall? Hensarling? Burgess? Barton? — and how public policy could be impacted here and elsewhere.
In the state's 15 largest counties, early voting has spiked. The percentage of registered voters who have already cast their ballots is nearly twice what it was at the same point back in 2006: 5.2 percent of registered voters this time, compared to 2.7 percent four years ago.