After conservative lawmakers objected to a motion by a liberal Democrat, members of their own party stabbed them in the back and punished them by killing their bills.
On Thursday, as lawmakers faced a deadline to advance legislation under the House rules, liberal Democrat Senfronia Thompson of Houston moved to suspend the rules to set a Local & Consent Calendar for the following day with more than one hundred items.
Noting that the motion was clearly and explicitly against the rules of the Texas House and that it would leave members less than nine hours overnight to read the bills before voting on them, State Rep. Tony Tinderholt (R–Arlington) led the fight against the suspension in an impassioned case for lawmakers to consider the consequences of their action.
Despite Tinderholt’s plea against the motion it passed overwhelmingly with virtually all lawmakers other than those conservative members of the Texas House Freedom Caucus supporting Thompson’s motion.
Thompson then convened a committee meeting where she not only generated a calendar of mostly Democrat and liberal Republican bills for Friday. She also moved to send a package of conservative bills by to their death by transferring them to the general calendars committee.
Joining Thompson in her retribution against the conservatives were Republican State Reps. Cindy Burkett (Sunnyvale), Giovanni Capriglione (Keller), Jay Dean (Longview), James Frank (Wichita Falls), Larry Gonzales (Round Rock), Brooks Landgraf (Odessa), Andrew Murr (Kerrville), and Ron Simmons (Carrollton). Those Republicans voted to punish members of their own party for simply requesting that the rules be followed.
The bills slaughtered by Thompson and her crew of Republican backstabbers includes a measure by conservative State Reps. Briscoe Cain (Deer Park), Matt Shaheen (Plano), and others. They also killed two innocuous measures authored by Jeff Leach (Plano) who even voted with the crony cabal to suspend the rules.
It should be noted that these lawmakers did nothing while conservative priorities died—including those explicitly labeled as legislative priorities for the Republican Party of Texas. And they’ve done nothing all session to punish the Democrats who use the rules to delay and kill conservative priorities.
By their actions, the House Republican Caucus (and even more so the Republicans on the L&C Calendars Committee) have demonstrated that their true loyalties lie only to the coalition of Liberal Republicans and Democrats who control the Texas House.