"And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free."
Jonathan Stickland released a statement yesterday about last week's nonsense:
I want to address an unfortunate incident that took place last Thursday evening. I was set to lay out HB 142, which would eliminate red light cameras, in front of the Transportation Committee. Because our floor activity went so long that day, my layout was delayed until well into the evening. Many supporters of the bill had waited all day – some for twelve hours – to testify and were still waiting. Thank you all for coming out to support the bill.Read the whole thing here.
Earlier in the day on Thursday, I objected to a bill carried by the Democrat Chairman of Transportation on the local and consent calendar, which would have given powers of arrest, search, and seizure to Federal Reserve security guards. Because of that confrontation, I approached Chairman Pickett of El Paso before his committee reconvened to make sure that my bill was still set for a hearing. I was informed that it was, and there was no discussion with me of any concerns on his part about the bill or the witness registration process.
Unfortunately, when I went to lay out my bill, I was prevented from doing so in a very deliberate and dramatic way. It was what I can only characterize as an ambush by a political opponent. Pickett hurled accusations at me and then refused to hear the bill, cutting off all of the members of the public from testifying on the legislation.
Let me make something clear. At that time, I had no idea what Mr. Pickett was referring to, and still have no firsthand knowledge of the facts related to his accusations.
Tensions run high at this point of the session, and I am not surprised that Mr. Pickett would be upset with me for knocking his bill off of the local and consent calendar. However, there is no reason that he could not have discussed his concerns with me in advance of the hearing. I would have gladly worked with him to resolve them.
As best as I can tell, the accusation Chairman Pickett leveled is that some people were registered in support of my bill who were not present in the Capitol building. My attorneys and I have reviewed the laws, the rules, the witness affirmation forms, and the House personnel manual and have been unable to locate anything that commands that a person must be present in the capitol to register their support or opposition to a bill. In fact there are rules which suggest exactly the opposite.
Thank you all for your support and prayers. In my last campaign, I told all of you that I am not down here to make friends but to defend life, liberty, and fight for limited government. My voting record and actions prove that I have made good on that promise. It is an honor to serve you.