Hope the Texas Democrats are sitting down. That taxpayer subsidized road trip to Washington D.C. to avoid voting on election integrity bills? It appears to be all for not.
A New York Times reporter bears the extremely bad news: It looks like it wasn’t just a waste of taxpayer money, it was also a waste of their time.
Just in: A Texas senate aide tells me that a number of Texas Democratic senators have also left for Washington, but not enough to break a quorum in the senate.
A Republican Texas senate aide says that a quorum is expected and that they will likely take up SB1 today.
— Nick Corasaniti (@NYTnickc) July 13, 2021
“Just in: A Texas senate aide tells me that a number of Texas Democratic senators have also left for Washington, but not enough to break a quorum in the senate,” the Times reporter tweeted. “A Republican Texas senate aide says that a quorum is expected and that they will likely take up SB1 today.”
You read that right: The bills could be passed today anyway.
“So, while the Democrats were out taking selfies after their highly publicized rides on private jets and luxury buses, it turns out they may not be needed at all, after all.
Earlier, Texas Governor Greg Abbott said that the “flee-a-bustering” members of the Texas Legislature can actually be arrested upon their return if they are needed for a vote.
“As soon as they come back in the state of Texas, they will be arrested, they will be cabined inside the Texas Capitol until they get their job done,” Abbott said. It looks like that may not be necessary.
But Texas Governor Abbott did make it clear on “The Ingraham Angle” that what the Democrats did violated the Texas Constitution’s rules on the legislature.
“What the law is, it’s in the Constitution, and that is the House, the State House of Representatives, who are here in the capitol in Austin right now,” Abbott said, “they do have the ability to issue a call for their fellow members who are not showing up to be arrested, but only so long as that arrest is made in the State of Texas. That is why they have fled the state.”
“Once they step back into the state they will be arrested and brought back to the Capitol and we will be conducting business,” he added. The Texas Democrats may have luckily avoided that extraordinary measure.
The Texas Dems made an ostentatious display of exiting the State of Texas on chartered buses and planes to deny a quorum for voting on the election reforms. Or so they thought.
At least 58 Democratic state representatives traveled maskless on their own private planes at an expense of $100,000, while American taxpayers are forced by the TSA to travel on airlines with masks on even if vaccinated.
The Texas Dems pulled the ‘flee-a-buster’ to go to Washington’s Dulles International Airport on Monday afternoon to petition the Democratic Party leaders in the Senate to kill the filibuster.
The state legislators were not only on the public dime as they took their beer-fueled road trip, they made sure to pose for ‘selfies.’ The private plane travel also undoubtedly left quite the ‘carbon footprint.’
“Texas State House Democrats have arrived at Dulles Airport and are recording selfie videos of themselves for their social media networks,” New York Times reporter Reid Epstein noted.
Texas Democrats refuse to show up for work like they were elected to do and quit on Texas ……..but they didn’t forget to campaign fundraise with Beto’s help and bring the Miller Lite on the private jet owned by a Lebanese businessman they have taking them to Washington DC pic.twitter.com/YrdHy3wU9e
— MayesMiddleton (@mayes_middleton) July 12, 2021
“Texas Democrats refuse to show up for work like they were elected to do and quit on Texas ……..but they didn’t forget to campaign fundraise with Beto’s help and bring the Miller Lite on the private jet owned by a Lebanese businessman they have taking them to Washington DC,” Texas House Rep. Mayes Middleton pointed out.
Texas Democrat James Talarico explained why he and his fellow Democrats were absconding from their offices to again deny quorum in the votes on the legislature’s bills.
My Democratic colleagues and I are leaving the state to break quorum and kill the Texas voter suppression bill.
We’re flying to DC to demand Congress pass the For The People Act and save our democracy.
— James Talarico (@jamestalarico) July 12, 2021
“My Democratic colleagues and I are leaving the state to break quorum and kill the Texas voter suppression bill,” he said. “We’re flying to DC to demand Congress pass the For The People Act and save our democracy. Good trouble.”
The Texas Democrats fled from the vote to once again deny the legislature from having a quorum.
“Texas Democrats pulled off a dramatic, last-ditch walkout in the state House of Representatives on Sunday night to block passage of one of the most restrictive voting bills in the U.S., leaving Republicans with no choice but to abandon a midnight deadline and declare the legislative session essentially over,” Fox 13 reported in June.
While the news media celebrated the Democrats’ obstruction, Texas Governor Greg Abbott issued a statement that implies that election measures will be taken up in a ‘special session.’
“I declared Election Integrity and Bail Reform to be must-pass emergency items for this legislative session,” Abbott said. “It is deeply disappointing and concerning for Texans that neither will reach my desk. Ensuring the integrity of our elections and reforming a broken bail system remain emergencies in Texas. They will be added to the special session agenda. Legislators will be expected to have worked out the details when they arrive at the Capitol for the special session.”
Texas Governor Greg Abbott once again underscored on Monday night that he will continue to call special sessions until votes on election integrity bills, bail reform and border security is held.
“I will continue calling special session after special session, because over time it’s going to continue until they step up to vote,” Gov. Abbott said.
The Texas Democrats thus are only avoiding the inevitable as they fundraise for their publicity stunt.
“Even if Democratic lawmakers stay out of state for the next few weeks, the governor could continue to call 30-day sessions or add voting restrictions to the agenda when the [Texas legislature] takes on the redrawing of the state’s political maps later this summer,” the Texas Tribune noted.
It looks like the timeline for the Texas election integrity bills’ votes will be moving up.
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OPINION: This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion.