Share
News

Texas House Speaker Signs Arrest Warrants for Absent Democrats

Share

The battle over compelling Texas Democratic legislators to show up for work escalated Wednesday when House Speaker Dade Phelan signed warrants to round up the absent Democrats.

That prompted a reply from the leader of the runaway legislators that they are doing their jobs even if they never set foot in Texas again.

The clash of wills began when Republicans crafted an election integrity bill that Democrats said was an attack on their constituents. Democrats walked out of the legislative chamber in May — thus preventing a quorum from being present — to prevent the bill from being passed.

After Republican Gov. Greg Abbott called a special legislative session in July, Democrats fled the state for Washington, D.C., rather than be within reach of any legal mechanism within Texas that could force them to show up and vote.

That session expired, and a new one has begun with most of the Democrats who fled in July still ensconced in Washington hotels.

Trending:
Watch: Actor Drops Devastating Truth Bomb on Alec Baldwin, Shows Why 'Rust' Gun Couldn't Have Fired Itself

On Tuesday, the Texas Supreme Court upheld the right of the state House to compel members to attend and arrest them if they would not come on their own, leading to action from the House, on an 80-12 vote, to authorize Speaker Dade Phelan to issue civil arrest warrants to round up Democrats and get on with the business of legislating.

Phelen issued warrants for 52 absent Democrats, according to The Dallas Morning News.

Democratic Rep. Chris Turner said all this legal stuff does not matter because Democrats are “fully within our rights as legislators to break quorum to protect our constituents.”

“Texas House Democrats are committed to fighting with everything we have against Republicans’ attacks on our freedom to vote,” he said in a statement.

Has this runaway tactic backfired on Texas Democrats?

Others say they will defy the warrants.

“I just question whether DPS or anyone can break down my door to come and put me in shackles and drag me there,” Democratic Rep. Vikki Goodwin said. “I feel certain that I can stay in my home, and stay off the House floor.”

Although Democrats have projected a united front, some members have returned in dribs and drabs so that as of Monday, the House was only four members short of a quorum.

Some Republicans are losing patience.

“They just need to put them all in handcuffs, drag them in, throw them in the middle of chambers, lock the doors and unhandcuff ’em … a couple of them would go bug-eyed crazy,” Republican state Rep. Cecil Bell vented.

Related:
Plumber Who Discovered Cash Stash in Walls of Church Calls Out Joel Osteen

Rep. Jim Murphy, head of the House Republican Caucus, said he would prefer the just get on with the work facing legislators.

“I think it’s incredible that we would have to consider arresting people to have them perform the office they campaigned for and honor the obligation they swore to uphold,” Murphy said, according to the Austin American-Statesman.

Republican state Rep. Matt Krause said he hoped that Democrats would bow to the inevitable and return, according to The New York Times.

“I hope this kind of wakes them up and allows them to say, ‘All right, it’s time to get back to work,’” he said.

Truth and Accuracy

Submit a Correction →



We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

Tags:
, , , , , ,
Share
Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.
Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.
Jack can be reached at jackwritings1@gmail.com.
Location
New York City
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Foreign Policy, Military & Defense Issues




Conversation

The Western Journal is pleased to bring back comments to our articles! Due to threatened de-monetization by Big Tech, we had temporarily removed comments, but we have now implemented a solution to bring back the conversation that Big Tech doesn't want you to have. If you have any problems using the new commenting platform, please contact customer support at commenting-help@insticator.com. Welcome back!