Midterm with Murray

Four Tuesdays, September 28, October 12 and 26, and November 9, 6:00–7:30 p.m. | The Briar Club, 2603 Timmons Lane at Westheimer (parking lot across Timmons Lane from the club)

On the day before the first anniversary of President Obama’s inauguration, Republican Scott Brown won the Massachusetts special election to fill the Senate seat vacated by Ted Kennedy, the revered liberal Democrat who had held for decades the seat once occupied by his brother John F. Kennedy. Politicos knew then that the equations were reconfigured for the 2010 midterm elections, reflecting a new set of variables and reframing the discernment of the forces at play in American politics.

In the 2010 midterm elections, one-third of the Senate (34 seats), all members of the House of Representatives, and at least 36 governors are up for election. Both parties have suffered defections and intrigue, and it remains to be seen whether the electorate will continue to trust Obama’s party after the prolonged debate and eventual partisan passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. How will the war in Afghanistan and the state of the economy affect the midterm elections, which historically result in lost seats for the party that won the White House?

Meanwhile, back in Texas, Bill White,  Houston’s popular former mayor, appears to be the strongest gubernatorial candidate Democrats have nominated since Ann Richards in 1990, giving the longest-serving Texas governor, Republican Rick Perry, the most difficult race of his career.

Perfectly positioned to explain the weave of this season’s political threads, pollster and political prognosticator Richard Murray will speak to us three times before the midterm elections and one time a week after Election Day 2010.

Richard Murray is the Bob Lanier Professor of Urban Public Policy and director of surveying for the Center for Public Policy at the University of Houston, where an endowed scholarship in his name was established in April 2008.



Fall 2018 brochures are out! Please let us know if you did not receive one and we will be happy to send one to you.

Registration is now open. You may register online, by mail, or by phone with a credit card. 


The interest list for the fall and spring study tours is also now open. If you are interested in traveling with the Houston Seminar to Natchez in the fall of 2018 or Virginia in the spring of 2019, please call the registrar at 713.666.9000 to place your name on a list. Please see Terms and Conditions for "travel list" policy.


Please note a date in the Mid-term Elections course has changed from that published in the brochure. The course will meet the first two Mondays, October 29 and November 5 as planned, but will meet Tuesday, November 13 instead of Monday, November 12. 


Also note Art Underground: Carlos Cruz-Diez at the Cistern is FULLY SUBSCRIBED. Please contact the registrar if you would like to be wait listed for this course. 


Have a great summer. We look forward to seeing you this fall!


For additional information about any of our courses, to register offline, or to add your name to our mailing and/or email lists, please contact our adminstrator at  or phone 713.666.9000.