Post Date: August 2022
Second Reading Podcast: Principle and politics in Biden's push on democracy in America
In a new Second Reading Podcast, James Henson & Joshua Blank talk about President Biden's new offensive on the threat to democracy posed by forces in the Republican Party – and how much it will resonate in GOP-dominated Texas.
Can country roads take Beto O'Rourke home?
There are Democratic votes to be had in rural Texas. Looking back at polling between 2015 and June 2022, on average over that time span, 61.75% of rural Texas voters have identified as Republicans and 25.61% as Democrats. The data don’t demonstrate significant fluctuations in the party identification patterns of Texas’ rural voters over time, though the Republican share has not been less than 64% in 6 UT/Texas Politics Project polls conducted between June 2021 and June 2022. Democratic identification among rural voters has stood at 22% in each of three surveys conducted so far in 2022. The remainder of the rural registered voter pool, 12.57% on average, identify as independent, by which we mean voters who neither identify with, nor consistently lean toward, either party. So while a non-trivial share of Democrats appear to remain in Texas’ rural areas, in the recent term, the GOP advantage does seem to be slightly on the increase — consistent with broader trends in party system dynamics.
Second Reading Podcast: Beto O'Rourke's rural strategy
In a new Second Reading Podcast, James Henson & Joshua Blank assess the potential impact of Texas gubernatorial candidate Beto O'Rourke's campaign efforts in rural parts of the state.
Second Reading Podcast: Managing Mar-a-Lago politics amidst signs of political decay in the U.S.
In a new Second Reading Podcast, James Henson & Joshua Blank talk about the politics of Republican responses to the aftermath of the Mar-a-Lago search, and the broader context of the decay of democratic norms and institutions.
Second Reading Podcast: A debate, bussing, and a warrant is executed at Mar-A-Lago
In a new Second Reading Podcast, James Henson & Joshua Blank talk about some political developments in Texas this week, and the nasty reactions to the execution of a search warrant at Mar-a-Lago.
Public opinion data points for Texas Conservatives as CPAC lands in Dallas
The Conservative Political Action Conference, meeting in Dallas August 4-7, bills itself as “the largest and most influential gathering of conservatives in the world.” Marketing aside, the marquee speakers at this years Dallas confab – former U.S. president Donald Trump and Hungarian Prime Minister Victor Orban – testify to how powerful currents of authoritarianism and nativism are bringing to the surface a unabashedly reactionary resurgence within mainstream conservatism in the U.S. and Europe.