Texas Politics: Governing the Lone Star State, 7th Edition (Paperback) book cover

Texas Politics

Governing the Lone Star State, 7th Edition

By Cal Jillson


332 pages | 66 Color Illus.

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pub: 2019-03-11
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The seventh edition of this popular text has been expanded and updated to better fit the needs of a stand-alone Texas politics course. Jillson continues to approach the politics of the Lone Star State from historical, developmental, and analytical perspectives, while giving students the most even-handed, readable, and engaging description of Texas politics available today. Students are encouraged to connect the origins and development of government and politics in Texas to its current practice and alternatives possible through change and reform. This text helps instructors prepare their students to master the origin and development of the Texas Constitution, the structure and powers of state and local government in Texas, how Texas fits into the U.S. federal system, as well as political participation, the electoral process, and public policy in Texas.


Texas Politics offers instructors and students an unmatched range of pedagogical aids and tools. Each chapter opens with an engaging vignette and a series of focus questions to orient readers to the learning objectives at hand and concludes with a chapter summary, a list of key terms, review questions, suggested readings, and web resources. "Let’s Compare" boxes help students see how Texas sits alongside other states, "Texas Legends" boxes spotlight key figures in Texas political history, "Pro & Con" boxes bring conflicting political views into sharper focus and every chapter features a timeline of important events in Texas history.

New to the 7th Edition

  • Covers the 2016 national elections, the 2017 legislative session, and the 2018 state and national elections as they affect Texas.
  • Highlights Governor Greg Abbott’s call for a constitutional convention; Texas voter ID law updates; redistricting cases; the right of secession; and Obergefell v. Hodges.
  • Provides a detailed study of the 2018–2019 state budget and the taxing and spending decisions that went into it, including the Texas Supreme Court school funding decision of 2016.

Table of Contents


Chapter 1. Texas and the Texans: Then and Now

Chapter 2. The Texas Constitution and American Federalism

Chapter 3. Political Participation in Texas: Voters, Campaigns, and Elections

Chapter 4. Interest Groups in Texas

Chapter 5. Political Parties in Texas

Chapter 6. The Texas Legislature

Chapter 7. The Governor and the Executive Branch

Chapter 8. The Judicial System in Texas

Chapter 9. Local government in Texas

Chapter 10. Budgets and Public Policy: Revenues, Expenditures, and Policy Goals in Texas

Appendix A. William Barret Travis’s Letter from the Alamo

Appendix B. The Texas Declaration of Independence

Appendix C. Selections from The Texas Constitution

About the Author

Cal Jillson is professor in the department of political science at Southern Methodist University. His recent books include American Government: Political Development and Institutional Change, 10th edition; Lone Star Tarnished: A Critical Look at Texas Politics and Public Policy, 3rd edition; The American Dream in History, Politics, and Fiction; and Pathways to Democracy: The Political Economy of Democratic Transition. He is frequently cited in local and national media on a range of political issues.

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