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What’s Houston’s Political Identity?

What’s Houston’s Political Identity?

houston skyline

Texas is undeniably a conservative state, dominated in state offices by Republicans and largely on the national stage by far right-leaning figures. Yet, here in Houston, we seem to be a more bluish (or at least less red) dot, politically speaking. Are we, though, really so different from the rest of Texas, or do some Houstonians just wish we were?

Today we consider how much perceptions of Houston – here, across the state and nationwide — are influenced by the political opinions of the observer. We contemplate whether we reflect the image of the rest of Texas, or merely lack a clearer, non-political image of Greater Houston independent of the rest of Texas?

And do our most prominent nationally-known politicians – former Gov. Rick Perry and U.S. Senator Ted Cruz – reflect to the rest of the country what we want to get across about who we are? Do they skew others’ perceptions of what Houstonians – and Texans – are about?

Our guests are: Brandon Rottinghaus, associate professor of political science at the University of Houston; Jay Aiyer, assistant professor of political science at Texas Southern University; Wayne Ashley, author of the blog “The Texas Leftist;” and Neal Meyer, local citizen activist with Houston Property Rights.

About the Author

Michael Hagerty

Michael HagertyMichael Hagerty is the Senior Producer for Houston Matters. He has a degree in journalism from Abilene Christian University and has served as news director for NPR and PBS stations around Texas and The West, including: KUNR-FM in Reno, Nev.; KNPB-TV in Reno, Nev.; and KWBU-TV/FM in Waco, Texas. He got his start on the air as a college student hosting Morning Edition at KACU-FM in Abilene, Texas. A native of the Chicago area and an avid Cubs fan, Michael spent four seasons as the public address announcer for the Reno Aces, the Triple-A affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks.View all posts by Michael Hagerty →