Our Three Best

WHEN BOB DAEMMRICH starts snapping pictures in the state capitol, lawmakers snap to attention. They know the 44-year-old photographer is after candid shots for Texas Monthly’s biennial rating of the state’s lawmakers (see “ The Best and the Worst Legislators ,”). Daemmrich, whose pictures frequently appear in Newsweek and Time, has been part of the team that has produced the story since 1987, and his subjects know him well; with his 600mm lens—the kind used for shooting sports events—he’s hard to miss. This year, by the time he learned who made the cut and who didn’t from executive editor Paul Burka and contributing editor Patricia Kilday Hart, he had shot more than three thousand images, many of which were red herrings to keep everyone guessing. Although this is Burka’s thirteenth and Hart’s sixth time to report the story—he does the House and she does the Senate—they still agonize over it. But in the end, they insist, they simply convey the consensus. “In essence, the list already exists,” they say, practically in unison. “We’re just the messengers.”

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