Brian D. Sweany's Profile Photo

Brian D. Sweany has been the editor in chief of Texas Monthly since July 2014. A native Texan who was born on Texas Independence Day, he began his career in journalism as an intern at the magazine in 1996, and in the intervening years, he held nearly every possible job in the editorial department. Before being promoted to his current post, he was a senior executive editor in charge of Texas Monthly's political coverage. Sweany has also worked as an assistant professor in the journalism department at Ithaca College, in New York, and as a senior editor at D Magazine, in Dallas. He is active in a number of civic and volunteer organizations, serving on the boards of the Texas Book Festival, the Texas Cultural Trust, and the Frank W. and Sue Mayborn School of Journalism at the University of North Texas, in Denton. He lives in Austin with his wife, two children, and an ever-growing manuscript for The Kingdom of the Saddle, a biography of Charles Goodnight to be published by Penguin.

Politics & Policy |
July 28, 2014

The Trouble With the Enterprise Fund

Governor Perry’s decision to fund the opening of a new Charles Schwab office in El Paso (and another in Austin) is a classic example of what is wrong with the governor’s economic development funds. Charles Schwab is a national firm that needs no subsidy from the state to succeed. The

Politics & Policy |
July 11, 2014

More on the UT Regents

I have generally been impressed by UT regents’ chair Paul Foster’s ability to smooth the waters concerning the Bill Powers controversy. But Foster was out of line when, a day after the University of Texas System announced that Powers would step down in June 2015 — ending a standoff that

Politics & Policy |
July 10, 2014

The Story of Wallace Hall

My colleague Skip Hollandsworth has written a timely story for the upcoming August issue that was posted online this morning. Titled “Is This the Most Dangerous Man in Texas?” it’s about UT Regent Wallace Hall, the impeachment process, and the resignation of William Powers, the president of UT-Austin.

Politics & Policy |
July 8, 2014

Asleep at the Switch

Wendy Davis is asleep at the switch again. The Obama administration has opened a new front on the battle over Medicaid expansion. By 2016, says the White House, states that have adopted expansion will have saved $4.3 billion. In addition, expansion states would have experienced 3.3 million annual physicians’ visits,

Politics & Policy |
June 24, 2014

Your Friends and Contributors

The list of recipients of Emerging Technology Fund grants in particular is replete with Perry’s longtime friends and campaign contributors. The Dallas Morning News has reported on who received some of these grants, and have contributed large sums to his campaigns. The list includes: •$2.75 million to Terrabon Inc., a

Politics & Policy |
June 13, 2014

Rick Perry on Homosexuality

I’m stunned that Rick Perry allowed himself to be drawn into a discussion of homosexuality in an appearance before the Commonwealth Club of San Francisco, in the nation’s most gay-friendly city. I thought he was far too seasoned a politician to make that kind of blunder. Apparently not.

Politics & Policy |
June 11, 2014

Face to Face With Rick Perry

A frank conversation about the accomplishments and the missteps over a fourteen-year gubernatorial career—from tort reform to his executive order on HPV—with the man who can claim the longest, and most powerful, tenure of any governor in Texas history (and also what’s next in 2016).

Burka Blog |
June 4, 2014

Notes from the Republican State Convention

A fight over immigration looms at the Republican state convention, which begins tomorrow in Fort Worth.This alert went out to Republicans attending the convention, from leaders opposed to immigration reform: “If you haven’t been paying attention, [Speaker] John Boehner and his “leadership” team (that includes Pete Sessions) have

Politics & Policy |
June 3, 2014

Perry and the Threat of a Special Session

Rick Perry and the House appear to be on a collision course. The chatter is increasing around the Capitol that if the Transparency Committee continues on its course to impeach Wallace Hall, the governor will call the Legislature into a series of special sessions this summer, presumably on transportation.I don’t

Politics & Policy |
April 16, 2014

Castro v. Patrick

I watched the debate on immigration between Dan Patrick and Julian Castro last night. Erica is also going to write about it today, but in my mind it didn’t really settle anything though it did raise a long-lingering issue. During the course of the debate, Patrick said that

Politics & Policy |
April 7, 2014

The Pre-K Wars

UPDATE: This post has been edited to correct errors related to the candidates’ position on pre-K and public education. I regret the error.Why does pre-K matter? The answer is that professional educators wouldn’t be so gung-ho about pre-kindergarten instruction unless they saw the huge value – both in terms of

Politics & Policy |
April 4, 2014

The Lesson of School Finance

The ongoing lawsuit regarding the state’s public school system is expected to come to a head in May, when Travis County district judge John Dietz could issue his ruling. The question is whether Texas’s funding of public schools is inadequate, and, therefore, violates the Texas constitution’s imprimatur in Article VII

Politics & Policy |
March 3, 2014

Five Races to Watch

Here are five races that I’m watching with particular interest tomorrow that are part of an ongoing battle for control of the Republican party.Sarah Davis vs. Bonnie ParkerWhy it matters:This is a rematch of the 2010 primary, when Davis beat Parker 54-45. Davis is the only pro-choice Republican woman in