is executive editor and co-founder of The Texas Tribune, where he writes regular columns on politics, government and public policy. Before joining the Tribune, Ross was editor and co-owner of Texas Weekly. He did a 28-month stint in government as associate deputy comptroller for policy and director of communications with the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts. Before that, he reported for the Houston Chronicle from its Austin bureau and for the Dallas Times Herald, first on the business desk in Dallas and later as its Austin bureau chief, and worked as a Dallas-based freelance business writer, writing for regional and national magazines and newspapers. Ross got his start in journalism in broadcasting, covering news for radio stations in Denton and Dallas.
Guns, taxes, capital punishment, sanctuary cities and minimum wages play well with some audiences. What Lupe Valdez is talking about on her way to the Texas Democratic primaries could be risky if she makes it to the general election.
Anguish over property taxes is at or near the top of the list of what politicians hear most often from Texans. This is not a complicated part of the civic compact: Voters are peeved. Politicians aim to please. Lowering taxes would make a politician popular with voters.
Candidates run to the things that help them, run away from the things that hurt them and leave the rest alone. Republicans are not running from President Donald Trump, an indication they don't think voters want them to.
Recovering from historic storms can take a long, long time, as the Texas Gulf Coast knows. And we’re entering an election year in which the voters will have a chance to grade incumbents on the longer-term response to Hurricane Harvey.
TribTalk is a place for opinions and editorials and even poetry (sometimes, if it’s great) written by people who are usually in the audience instead of on stage. Here are the best columns from this year.
The end of the year is when property owners have to pay their taxes — an increasingly large bill in Texas that’s a key part of the state’s rickety school finance system. Here’s a sampling of columns tracking that debate in 2017.
Some of the political kids in Texas wanted a quick ruling on redistricting for Christmas, a perennial request that never seems to be granted. With just two Texas elections left in the decade, the courts are still arguing over the state's maps.
2017 was the year when House Speaker Joe Straus found his voice, when the culture conservatives lost out to the business conservatives and when the fault lines that define today’s Texas GOP opened up for everyone to see.
Competitiveness is the biggest difference between Texas House elections and those for Texas seats in Congress or in the state Senate. A dozen or so seats in the Texas House are still within the grasp of either of the major political parties.
Twelve of the 15 districts on the Texas Senate ballot in 2018 are represented by Republicans. Most of those, and all of those held by Democrats, have remained firmly in the clutches of the party now in power during the last two election cycles. Most of 2018's competition will be in March, not in November.