Friday, May 17, 2019

#TXLEGE: house leadership has a decision to make this weekend

"When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice;
But when a wicked man rules, the people groan."
Proverbs 29:2

UPDATE: After writing the original blog post, but before we hit 'publish,' we received the following bill alert.

In case you haven't heard:
Republican Party of Texas priority legislation to ban taxpayer-funded lobbying received a potentially fatal blow in the Texas House on Friday morning.

Senate Bill 29 by State Sen. Bob Hall (R–Edgewood), which would bar the practice of governments from using taxpayer dollars to higher lobbyists who often work against taxpayers in the Texas Capitol, was passed by the State Senate last month. At the same time, legislation filed in the House by State Rep. Mayes Middleton (R–Wallisville) languished in the Calendars Committee, never being scheduled for a vote.

Conservatives had renewed hope for the bill, however, when the Senate’s version of the bill was scheduled for a vote in the House on Friday.

But shortly after the body gaveled in on Friday morning, State Rep. Dade Phelan (R–Beaumont) made a motion to take the bill off the calendar and send it back to the State Affairs Committee, which he chairs, reportedly in order to fix errors that could have enabled opponents to kill the bill on procedural grounds.
Obvious FACT #1: This isn't good.

Obvious FACT #2: This is happening alongside the...whatever...that's going on with the election bills.

Obvious FACT #3: We haven't heard anything about property taxes or employment law preemption in awhile.

All of these items passed the Senate.

None of them have passed the house.

So far.

Which brings us to the decision house leadership must make over the weekend: Do these bills get across the finish line?!?

Because those bills, even in their current form, represent tangible progress on those issues.

If those bills pass, even in their current form, we can declare victory and go home.  Yes, these issues will be back next session.  But those bills, even in their current form, aren't a bad start.

If.  They.  Pass.

Unfortunately, there's nothing anyone outside the chamber can do.

It's up to Dennis Bonnen.  And it's up to the committee chairs Dennis Bonnen appointed.  And it's up to the committee members Dennis Bonnen appointed.

If those bills get done, we've had an ok session.

If those bills don't get done, it'll get really ugly.

Just look at what's happening with the Tories in the U.K.

Bottom Line: We have no idea what's going to happen.  But the decisions made this weekend will have long-lasting consequences.  Pray.  And choose wisely....

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