Possessing a rich, unique history unparalleled by nearly any of the other 49 states, the political history of Texas is a fascinating journey, having been alternatively a Mexican territory, independent republic, frontier state, and anchor of the central U.S. Randy Erben ’78, an adjunct professor at the University of Texas Law School, comprehensively documents the modern political systems of Texas in his new textbook Texas Government in a Nutshell (West Academic Publishing), discussing the three branches of governments, their powers, duties, and famous representatives, and how each office arrived at the position it did. From budgeting to regulatory commissions to the statutory powers of the lieutenant governor, Erben covers every corner of Texas politics, with a specific emphasis on the role of the executive branch. He provides the most thorough overview of the workings of the Lone Star State.