Texans’ attitudes about politics – whether about issues, ideas, institutions, political leaders, or any other political subject – are only one of several persistent elements that shape how the state’s political system works. Political elites, by definition, make decisions that are far more consequential than any individual vote. Structural elements like the economy, international flows of migrants, or climate change ripple through politics. But in a democratic political system, even one experiencing duress, public opinion interacts with all of these factors, responding to context and to the actions of elites while also acting as part of a feedback loop among all three. Below are nine observations drawn from University of Texas/Texas Politics Project polling data to provide context as the 2024 elections unfold.