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.
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and Sen. Dan Patrick in the Senate chamber as political drama unfolds at the Texas Capitol in the last hour of the 83rd Texas Legislature's first special session.
Dan Patrick has made his opposition to abortion a centerpiece of his campaign for lieutenant governor. But two prominent abortion opponents are criticizing the Houston senator for once owning stock in the maker of the "morning after" pill.
State Sen. Wendy Davis, flanked by her father, Jerry Russell, and her two daughters, delivering her victory speech at the Fort Worth Hilton on Nov. 6, 2012.
Sen. Wendy Davis will announce her future political plans on Oct. 3. Davis has said she will run either for re-election or for Texas governor, but most signs are pointing toward the latter.
Greg Abbott speaking to supporters at the American Wind Power Center in Lubbock on July 17, 2013.
Attorney General Greg Abbott, the leading candidate for Texas governor, distanced himself from a controversial tweet by his top campaign adviser, who repeated a blogger's line that Democrat Wendy Davis was "too stupid to be governor."
U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz holding a press conference at the Anzalduas International Bridge in Mission surrounded by a group of local ranchers who said they've been affected by poor border security.
U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz has been an ardent and highly visible opponent of giving undocumented immigrants a way to become U.S. citizens. He is advocating a middle ground — legalization and more visas without citizenship.
In Texas, where licensed gun toters are allowed to bypass the metal detectors at the state Capitol and the sitting governor once shot a coyote while jogging, getting between Texans and their guns can be politically dangerous.
Attorney General Greg Abbott announces his bid for Texas governor at a San Antonio rally on July 14, 2013.
A day after the San Antonio City Council adopted a far-reaching anti-discrimination ordinance, Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott warned it would open up the city to a lawsuit but declined to say if the state would initiate one.
Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, debates Sen. Bob Deuell, R-Greenville, about halfway through a filibuster of SB 5 on June 25, 2013.
Jerry Russell, the father of state Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, died Thursday, according to a message she posted on Facebook.
Callie Richmond / Alexa Ura / Todd Wiseman
If Wendy Davis runs for Texas governor, her biography will face greater scrutiny. Voters are likely to find an exceptionally ambitious woman who has experienced both poverty and wealth and isn’t nearly as partisan as some think.
Crowds gather outside the Senate hallway to hear State Sen. Wendy Davis after the midnight drama that killed abortion legislation in the last hour of the 83rd Texas legislature's first called special session.
Texans will have to wait a little longer to find out if Wendy Davis will run for governor. The state senator said Wednesday she is postponing her decision until late September while she cares for her ailing father.
U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz speaks at National Instruments in Austin on Aug. 22, 2013.
Liberal critics say Republicans who questioned Barack Obama’s eligibility to be president are hypocritical now that one of their own, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, is facing questions about his. Partisanship may also be a factor.
Travis County Democratic Party volunteers make calls to voters on Election Day from the coordinated campaign headquarters in Austin, Texas.
The office measures about 300 square feet and the mismatched, rickety furniture inside looks like leftovers from a charity garage sale. But the headquarters of Battleground Texas is humming with activity.
U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz speaking at the 2013 Conservative Political Action Conference in National Harbor, Md., on March 16, 2013.
Ted Cruz saw his fortunes rise after picking up endorsements from like-minded conservatives in Washington. Now he is a hot commodity himself, as a potential 2016 presidential candidate and a potential kingmaker in other Senate races.
U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, speaking at the 2013 Young Americans for Liberty National Convention at George Mason University in Arlington, Va., on July 31, 2013.
U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz has come home to Texas to promote his long-shot bid to defund "Obamacare," warning Tea Party activists in Kingwood Monday that they have only a few months to stop the health care reform law.
Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, speaking at the 2013 Young Americans for Liberty National Convention at George Mason University in Arlington, Virginia on July 31, 2013.
U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, born in Calgary in 1970, said Monday he would give up any claim he might have to Canadian citizenship.
Republican Tom Pauken discusses his challenge to Attorney General Greg Abbott for the Republican nomination for Texas governor on July 9, 2013.
Tom Pauken, waging a longshot bid to be the GOP nominee for Texas governor, attacked front-runner Greg Abbott Thursday for joining forces with U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to block a proposed airline merger.