BurkaBlog readers, I bring you good news. In light of my colleague Paul’s pending retirement, my colleague Brian Sweany’s promotion to editor-in-chief, and my apparent inability to write daily posts without shirking my other assignments or giving up my hobby of railing against Obamacare on Twitter, the blog itself has been a little short-staffed.

Thankfully R.G. Ratcliffe has agreed to join us for session. To rejoin us, that is; he was part of Texas Monthly’s politics team during the 2011 session, as many of you no doubt remember. And he’s covered the Lege since 1983, as a political writer for the Houston Chronicle, among other outlets, so he knows what he’s talking about.

R.G.’s official first day is February 16th, but you can’t keep a political writer from writing about politics, nor should you try, when faced with a Lege as irresistible as this one. So his first post of the session will be up later this afternoon. In the interim, please join me in welcoming R.G. back to BurkaBlog!