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Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst

Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst:

An Inventory of Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst Records at the Texas State Archives, 2001-2015, bulk 2003-2014

Organization History Scope and Contents Restrictions Related Materials
Lieutenant Governor Dewhurst

Image courtesy of Legislative Resource Library of Texas


Creator: Texas. Office of the Lieutenant Governor.
Title: Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst records
Dates: 2001-2015
Dates: bulk 2003-2014
Abstract: David Dewhurst served as the 41st lieutenant governor of Texas from January 14, 2003 to January 20, 2015. These records were created, gathered, and maintained by the Texas Office of the Lieutenant Governor during Dewhurst’s term in support of fulfilling his duties of office and consist of correspondence, reports, invitations, press releases, speeches, a photograph of Dewhurst, and one VHS videocassette, dating 2001-2015, bulk 2003-2014. A portion of the records are in electronic format.
Quantity: 11 cubic ft. and 15.8 GB (181,969 files)
Language: These materials are written predominately in English with scattered Spanish throughout.
Repository: Texas State Archives
Click here to enter the records

Other Finding Aids

A description of non-electronic records references in this finding aid is available at

Organization of the Records

These records are organized into five series and four subseries:

  • Constituent Services correspondence, 2003-2015, 2 cubic ft. and 15.8 GB (181,957 files) (RESTRICTED)(paper,digital)
    • Unanswered correspondence, 2003-2007, 2 cubic ft.
    • Constituent Affairs Unit outgoing correspondence, 2011-2014, 91 MB (1,312 files)
    • Correspondence Management System correspondence, 2003-2015, 15.7 GB (180,620 files)
    • Contact profile reports, 2003-2015, 546 MB (25 files)
  • Legislative Management System reports, 2002-2013, 41 MB (12 files)(digital)
  • Invitations, 2001-2003, 2008, 5 cubic ft. (RESTRICTED)(paper)
  • Press Office records, 2003-2012, 2.3 cubic ft.(paper)
  • Legislative files, 2005-2006, 1.7 cubic ft. (RESTRICTED)(paper)

For a description of the series that are restricted or available only in paper format, please see the finding aid at Texas Archival Resources Online.

Agency History

The office of lieutenant governor is powerful and influential in Texas state government. The Texas Constitution (Article IV, sections 1 and 16) gives the lieutenant governor power to act as governor in the event of the governor’s absence from the state or his/her death, resignation, impeachment, or inability or refusal to serve. The Constitution has also designated the lieutenant governor to serve as president of the Texas Senate. The current rules of the senate give the lieutenant governor authority to appoint all senate committees and their chairs, to decide all questions of order, to supervise all senate employees, and to determine the order of senate business. Texas statutes have made the lieutenant governor chairman of the Texas Legislative Budget Board (which drafts the state budget) and the Texas Legislative Council (which is the legislature’s main source for drafting bills), joint chair of the Texas Legislative Audit Committee (which appoints the state auditor), chair or vice-chair of the Texas Legislative Education Board (which oversees state education policy), and a member of the Legislative Redistricting Board of Texas (which redistricts house and senate seats after each decennial census).

(Sources include: Guide to Texas State Agencies, 11th edition (2001), and “Texas Politics: the Legislative Branch” (, Liberal Arts Instructional Technology Services, University of Texas at Austin, 3rd edition (2009), accessed December 10, 2015.)

Biographical Sketch

David Dewhurst served as the 41st lieutenant governor of Texas from January 14, 2003, to January 20, 2015, spanning the 78th through the 84th Legislature (he served only the first eight days of the 84th Legislature until the inauguration of the new lieutenant governor). He has held no other legislative office, though he served as Texas Land Commissioner from 1999 to 2003, the first Republican to do so since Reconstruction. He was born on August 18, 1945, in Houston, Texas, and was raised by his mother after his father was killed by a drunk driver when Dewhurst was two years old. He earned a bachelor’s degree at the University of Arizona. He served in the U.S. Air Force, the Central Intelligence Agency, and the U.S. State Department before re-establishing Texas-based Falcon Seaboard, a diversified energy and investments company, with initial company founder Ted Law in 1981. Following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, Governor Rick Perry appointed Dewhurst as chairman to the state Task Force on Homeland Security.

During his tenure as lieutenant governor, Dewhurst supported legislation for economic growth, education initiatives, and public safety, including border security. His Texas Children First plan resulted in passing child protection legislation to help prevent online exploitation of minors and to provide harsher penalties for child molesters. Dewhurst supported voter identification legislation that passed in 2011 (Senate Bill 14, 82nd Texas Legislature, Regular Session), requiring voters to show a government-issued photo ID in order to vote, with exemptions for people aged 70 and over and those with documented disabilities. Implementation of the law was delayed by intervention of the U.S. Department of Justice in support of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, under which Texas was required to receive federal clearance before making any changes to its voting laws, as well as by a federal court decision in 2012. A 2013 U.S. Supreme Court ruling (Shelby County v. Holder) removed federal oversight of voting in Texas and other jurisdictions previously covered by the Voting Rights Act. Texas’ voter ID law was allowed to go into effect for the 2014 mid-term elections after the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a stay in the case of Veasey v. Perry. In August 2015, the Texas voter ID law was struck down in federal court and will undergo review and a possible appeal.

In 2012 Dewhurst lost the Republican runoff election for U.S. Senator to former Texas Solicitor General Ted Cruz. In 2014 he lost the runoff election for lieutenant governor to Texas Senator Dan Patrick. Dewhurst has been married twice, has a step-daughter with his second wife, attorney Patricia Hamilton Dewhurst, and lives in Houston.

Scope and Content of the Records

David Dewhurst served as the 41st lieutenant governor of Texas from January 14, 2003 to January 20, 2015. These records were created, gathered, and maintained by the Texas Office of the Lieutenant Governor during Lieutenant Governor Dewhurst’s term in support of fulfilling his duties of office and consist of correspondence, reports, invitations, press releases, speeches, a photograph of Dewhurst, and a VHS videocassette, dating 2001-2015, with the bulk of materials dating 2003-2014.

Correspondence generated and received by the office makes up the majority of the records. Constituent Services correspondence, 2003-2015, is primarily in electronic format though it includes communications in paper format received by the office for which no response was made (one VHS videocassette appears among the paper correspondence). Constituent Affairs Unit outgoing correspondence and Correspondence Management System correspondence are searchable within contact profile reports generated from the Correspondence Management System (CMS) network application. CMS is maintained by the Texas Legislative Council and enables legislators’ offices to produce mail merges and reports with the information entered. Contact profile reports generated from CMS provide summary information for each correspondent, the subject of the communication sent, staff notes, and usually the full text of the office’s response if one was made; the reports should be used as the initial access point for the electronic records in this series.

(Click here to read more about the Scope and Contents)

Restrictions and Requirements

Restrictions on Access
Physical materials do not circulate, but may be used in the State Archives search room. Physical materials will be retrieved from and returned to storage areas by staff members.

In accordance with Texas Government Code, Chapter 306 and Chapter 323, David Dewhurst closed public access to communications between himself and citizens/residents of the State of Texas and with the Texas Legislative Council until January 1, 2019.

Because of the possibility that portions of these records fall under Public Information Act exceptions including, but not limited to, social security numbers (Texas Government Code, Section 552.147); home addresses, phone numbers, social security numbers, and personal family information of government employees and officials (Texas Government Code, Section 552.117); confidentiality of certain e-mail addresses (Texas Government Code, Section 552.137); and common law privacy (Texas Government Code, Section 552.101), an archivist must review these records before they can be accessed for research. The records may be requested for research under the provisions of the Public Information Act (Texas Government Code, Chapter 552).

The researcher may request an interview with an archivist or submit a request by mail (Texas State Library and Archives Commission, P.O. Box 12927, Austin, TX 78711), fax (512-463-5436), e-mail (, or see our web page ( Include enough description and detail about the information requested to enable the archivist to accurately identify and locate the information. If our review reveals information that may be excepted by the Public Information Act, we are obligated to seek an open records decision from the Attorney General on whether the records can be released. The Public Information Act allows the Archives ten working days after receiving a request to make this determination. The Attorney General has 45 working days to render a decision. Alternately, the Archives can inform you of the nature of the potentially excepted information and if you agree, that information can be redacted or removed and you can access the remainder of the records.

Types of restricted information as listed above apply to physical and electronic records. Some electronic records will not be available through our portal due to such restrictions. Please see Archives staff for further information.

Records series described in this finding aid have access restrictions specific to them, which are included in the series-level description. These Restrictions on Access do not apply to the series Legislative Management System reports or Press Office records.

Restrictions on Use
Most records created by Texas state agencies are not copyrighted. State records also include materials received by, not created by, state agencies. Copyright remains with the creator. The researcher is responsible for complying with U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17 U.S.C.).

Technical Requirements
Archives staff have not viewed the VHS videocassette and are therefore unable to verify the accuracy of its contents. Researchers wishing to access the videocassette must contact Archives staff to obtain the necessary equipment.

Researchers are required to wear gloves provided by Archives staff when reviewing photographic materials.

The following materials are offered as possible sources of further information on the agencies and subjects covered by the records. The listing is not exhaustive.

Texas State Archives
Texas Inaugural Committee, Perry-Dewhurst inaugural records, 2002-2003, 0.47 cubic ft.
Texas Legislative Council inaugural planning documents and other material, 1955-2003, 0.24 cubic ft., RESTRICTED
Texas Legislative Council redistricting records, 1981-1982, 1991-2006, bulk 2001-2006, 26.35 cubic ft., RESTRICTED
Texas Office of the Lieutenant Governor Ben Barnes records, 1943-1972, bulk 1968-1972, 230.8 cubic ft., RESTRICTED
Texas Office of the Lieutenant Governor Bob Bullock records, 1971-1999, bulk 1975-1998, 276 microfilm reels, two DVDs, and one videotape (includes records as Comptroller) [There is no finding aid for these unprocessed records. Call numbers are 1999/170 and Restricted Accessions Box 1979-2000 (2000/095).] RESTRICTED
Texas Office of the Lieutenant Governor William Pettus Hobby Jr. records, 1917, 1924, 1931, 1947, 1953-1990, undated, bulk 1968-1990, 445.53 cubic ft., RESTRICTED

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation
(Identify the item and cite the series), Texas Office of the Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst records. Archives and Information Services Division, Texas State Library and Archives Commission.

Accession Information
Accession numbers: 2015/039, 2015/120

These records were transferred to the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission by the Texas Senate on October 31 and November 3, 2014; and February 24 and March 13, 2015; and by the Texas Legislative Council on February 5, 2015.

Processing Information
Processed by Rebecca Romanchuk, December 2015

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