Paul Burka

The dean of the Capitol press corps, senior executive editor Paul Burka joined the staff of Texas Monthly one year after the magazine’s founding, in 1973. For nearly forty years he has led the magazine’s political coverage and spearheaded its storied roundup of the Best and Worst Legislators each biennium. A lifelong Texan, he was born in Galveston, graduated from Rice University with a B.A. in history, and received a J.D. from the University of Texas School of Law.

Burka is a member of the State Bar of Texas and spent five years as an attorney with the Texas Legislature, where he served as counsel to the Senate Natural Resources Committee.

Burka won a National Magazine Award for reporting excellence in 1985 and the American Bar Association’s Silver Gavel Award. He is a member of the Texas Institute of Letters and teaches at the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin. He is also a frequent guest discussing politics on national news programs on MSNBC, Fox, NBC, and CNN.


David Dewhurst and the Money Monopoly

The lieutenant governor flexes his financial muscle.

Late Filings

What the late filings mean for 2014.

Notes on the 2014 Primary

Who is safe–and who is in danger–in the 2014 primary?

Wendy Davis Emerges

Wendy Davis jumps into two contentious issues–not a moment too soon for her campaign.

The Politics of Chili

With a little luck–and some perfectly smoked brisket–the 84th Legislature will correct a longstanding wrong and make barbecue the official state dish.

A Challenge for Sarah Davis

It’s 2010 all over again: Bonnie Parker is challenging Sarah Davis for HD 134.

Does John Smithee Want to Be Speaker?

Is the House Republican from Amarillo a potential challenger for Speaker Joe Straus?

The Life and Fines of Nathan Hecht

Nathan Hecht, the recently sworn-in Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Texas, is a disgrace: a judge who ignores the spirit of the law.

The Legacy of T.R. Fehrenbach

The popular historian leaves behind an impressive body of work.

Where's Wendy (Part II)?

For the second time this election season, I have to ask: Where’s Wendy Davis?

MQS and Those "Terribly Liberal Republicans"

Michael Quinn Sullivan looks to be a main protagonist in the Republican Civil War.

Leticia Van de Putte Enters the Race

State senator Leticia Van de Putte throws her hat in the ring for lieutenant governor.

Final Thoughts on Nov. 22, 1963

What we learned about Dallas that fateful day.

New Life for Todd Staples (Or, Bad News for David Dewhurst)

Agriculture commissioner Todd Staples is showing new signs of life in his race for lieutenant governor.