Texas House “Freedom Caucus” invites enmity of members

Robert Pratt photo Copyright Pratt on Texas

Robert Pratt

The Austin American-Statesman’s Sean Collins Walsh reported: “In what’s been dubbed the “Mother’s Day Massacre,” a small group of tea party-aligned Republicans in the Texas House… used parliamentary maneuvers to defeat more than 100 bills in retaliation for what they see as a pattern of unfair treatment for ultra-conservative legislators by the House leadership.”

Walsh also reported that “The victims of their obstruction, however, were not the top allies of Speaker Joe Straus, R-San Antonio, who had none of his major priorities defeated, but rank-and-file members who saw scores of their proposals effectively killed as the self-styled Freedom Caucus gummed up the legislative process while key legislative deadlines approached.”

And if true, the House Freedom Caucus did itself more damage than good. When you are going to strafe the enemy, you had better make sure the fire his hitting the troops on the road and not the occupied civilians standing nearby.

“The final blow came Friday, when the group petitioned to remove all 121 bills from Friday’s Local and Consent Calendar, the agenda for routine bills that are usually approved without significant debate. Under the House rules, five members can request that a bill be removed from that calendar, requiring it to be debated and adopted like a regular bill. Because Friday was the deadline for the House to approve consent bills, pulling those measures from the agenda likely killed them,” the Statesman reported.

I saw a list of some of the bills stopped in this action and think we are better off with most of them gone but that doesn’t change the fact that by hitting fellow members hard in this way, the Freedom Caucus simply ensured that its members will continue to face derision in Austin and foster enmity from other members, many of whom are quite conservative.

What do you think?...

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