Tuesday, July 08, 2003

I just got email from my pal Mr. Strain, working with the Texas Motorcycle Rights Association, the email deals with the Texas Redistricting hooey, and it is the first 'real' news I heard. Unedited, from Sputnik"

We have watched the ultimate in partisan leadership the first few days of this session. We watched the Senate take the Floor as the Lt. Governor called a quorum present with only 11 Senators present. We have seen all the lights come on showing a House quorum when only 57 were present. But that was just the small stuff.

During the 4th of July holiday while most were celebrating their Liberty, the redistricting sub committee drew a completely new map and passed it out of committee on Saturday July 5th. On Sunday the Calendars Committee claimed a three day notice and passed the map to go to the Floor on Monday. That would mean that the notice was given two days prior to the map being drawn.

Monday at the capitol was a circus. During the Floor hearing Rep. Phil King said all the testimony at the House hearing had been taken into consideration for drawing this hidden map. When Rep. Villareal placed the stacks of affirmation papers on the podium with opposed and in favor pages side by side it showed that 90% of the testimony was against redistricting. The Speaker then ruled that the testimony didn't count. All those hearings and that money spent only to be called not relevant by the speaker.

The bottom line is that HB3, as substituted, passed the House at midnight Monday night without any concern for what the majority of Texans wanted. Now our only hope to stop this fiasco is in the senate. Senators Armbrister and Madla are on the fence. I know that Armbrister's correspondence is running very high against passage.

Get on the internet and flood these two offices with messages if you oppose HB3. I spoke with Senator Estes yesterday in the Gallery as the battle was going on. He wanted to know how I felt about redistricting. I told him I wasn't against redistricting just the way it was being done and the reason. He said he wanted to get a leather vest and be on our side.

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