The Texas State Preservation Board has not met in order to make rules about who can visit the legislators, but a press release states that masks are required and a COVID-19 test is “strongly encouraged.”
The SPB is a public body that is required to announce meetings, have an agenda when it meets, and maintain public records and minutes. None of that has been done. Gov. Greg Abbott is its chair.
Not to be outdone by the SPB’s lawlessness, the Texas Department of Public Safety announced that it made up a rule that says you must take a COVID-19 test to get into the Capitol on the first day of the Legislature. After that, apparently, they will enforce whatever the Legislature decides.
I have been a loyal member of the Republican Party for decades and part of its official clergy. For the record, I am appalled at this incredible failure to follow basic procedures and the almost whimsical approach to governance.
The Texas Supreme Court stated last year, “The Constitution is not suspended when the government declares a state of disaster.”
I don’t expect a lot of restraint, but I expect them to at least follow their own procedures while making their rules.
This is a commentary republished with the author’s permission. If you wish to submit a commentary to Texas Scorecard, please submit your article to firstname.lastname@example.org.