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.
A Texas governor can tell lawmakers what subjects to work on in a special session but can't tell them exactly what to do. The session that started this week is now in the hands of the Texas Legislature — not the governor.
The governor has identified the issues he wants lawmakers to work on during the special session. He says he'll keep score to track friends and foes. But he hasn't publicly made his positions clear — so how do they know how to vote?
The Texas Legislature is returning to Austin, but the leaders of the Senate and the House appear to be starting the new session on the same sour notes with which they ended the regular session seven weeks ago.
Democrats have some chances to pick up seats in the Texas House next year, with a dozen Republicans defending seats in politically wobbly districts. But watch those redistricting judges in San Antonio before you make any bets.
On this week's TribCast, Ross talks to Ayan, Alexa and Jay about high-level changes at the state's alcohol regulator, the redistricting trials underway in San Antonio and the special session that starts next Tuesday.
It's true that three of the Republican incumbents in the Texas congressional delegation live in districts where Donald Trump lost, but unless judges change the state's political maps, two of those districts are still dominated by the GOP.
Winning some more seats in the congressional delegation or the Legislature would make Texas Democrats happy, but the real prize at stake in the state's redistricting legislation is federal oversight of the state's Republican mapmakers.
Gov. Greg Abbott's special session agenda will include a call for a $1,000 pay raise for teachers. But he's not offering state money to pay for it — and he's not necessarily talking about giving every public school teacher a $1,000 check, either.
The regular legislative session belonged to legislative leaders — primarily Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, who aggressively set an agenda for the Senate. Now, with a special session looming, Gov. Greg Abbott is asserting himself.
Between a contentious regular session of the Texas Legislature and a special session that starts in less than four weeks, some lawmakers are talking about the people in leadership, starting with the speaker of the House.
Local government attorneys in Texas are about to take a page from Greg Abbott, who spent 12 years as the top attorney for the state of Texas — suing a faraway government that has its nose in their business.