Joshua Blank, PhD

Joshua Blank is the Research Director of the Texas Politics Project. Born in New York, NY, he has a bachelor's degree in political science from Boston University and a doctoral degree in government from the University of Texas at Austin.      

Public Opinion and the Border Surge

February 11, 2015
By: 
Joshua Blank, PhD

Yesterday, Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick announced a plan to continue the deployment of the Texas National Guard at the border through May to the tune of $12 million. Whether or not increasing Texas' commitment to border security using the Guard is a sound policy decision is an open question, but the politics of yesterday's announcement could not be clearer. 

The Geography of Committee Assignments in the Texas Legislature

February 9, 2015
By: 
Jim Henson, PhD
Joshua Blank, PhD

A map of the districts whose House members received committee chairs last week provides an interesting birds-eye view of influence in the chamber, especially within the Republican caucus.  

Why they fight: The Texas GOP and the looming session

December 18, 2014
By: 
Jim Henson, PhD
Joshua Blank, PhD

Given the relative harmony between mainline and Tea Party Republicans in the Texas electorate, why can't their elected officials in the Legislature seem to get along?

The 2016 spotlight turns to Texas

November 28, 2014
By: 
Jim Henson, PhD
Joshua Blank, PhD

Texas is already at the epicenter of the 2016 GOP presidential race — and not just because four Republicans with links to the state are on most early lists of top potential candidates. 

Texans Want to Do the Opposite of Obama's Action on Immigration

November 21, 2014
By: 
Joshua Blank, PhD

Last night, President Obama announced an executive action that would likely shield the deportation of up to five million undocumented immigrants currently living in the United States. In the October 2014 University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll, we asked Texas voters whether they agree or disagree with the following statement: "Undocumented immigrants currently living in the United States should be deported immediately." We found that overall, 60 percent of Texans, and large majorities of Republicans, Conservatives, and Tea Party Republicans all agreed. 

Obama Shifts Immigration Debate, and with it, Democratic Chances of Turning Texas Blue

November 21, 2014
By: 
Joshua Blank, PhD

President Obama has regularly been scorned by Democrats for his lack of interest in raw, naked politicking, but in announcing an executive action that will likely shield just under five million undocumented immigrants from deportation, he may have simultaneously altered the trajectory of the immigration debate while increasing the probability of party system change in places with large Hispanic populations, like Texas. 

Melodrama, but little mystery, in Texas election results

November 13, 2014
By: 
Jim Henson, PhD
Joshua Blank, PhD

The final tallies from last week were relatively predictable, but they still raise an important question: Was there something particular to Texas this year that gave Republicans here such huge wins?

Polling Trends in the Abbott-Davis Race

October 23, 2014
By: 
Joshua Blank, PhD
Jim Henson, PhD

A summary of public polling on the Texas Governor's race among likely voters since June 2014.

October 2014 UT/Texas Tribune Poll Finds Republican Candidates With Large Leads in Statewide Races

October 22, 2014
By: 
Jim Henson, PhD
Joshua Blank, PhD

The October 2014 University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll found Republican candidates favored over Democratic candidates by substantial margins in several statewide general election contests, with the Republican gubernatorial candidate, Attorney General Greg Abbott, leading the Democratic candidate, state Senator Wendy Davis of Fort Worth, by a 16-point margin, 54 percent to 38 percent.  Six percent of likely voters chose Libertarian candidate Kathie Glass, and Green Candidate Brandon Parmer was the choice of 2 percent.

CBS News/NYT The Upshot/YouGov Battleground Tracker Shows Abbott Leading Davis 54%-40%

October 10, 2014
By: 
Joshua Blank, PhD

The third wave results of the CBS/NYT/YouGov Battleground Tracker were released today, and show Abbott leading Davis by a 14-point margin, a 4-point gain for Davis since the last wave of polling.

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