The "Show Me Your Papers" Bill And Vouchers Are Dead
Tomorrow will end Greg Abbott's third-called special session with most of his priorities failing due to Republican infighting.
It’s always a victory for Texans when the Republicans in the Legislature fail to pass their racist and oppressive agenda. Tomorrow will end Greg Abbott’s third-called special session, and the majority of his special session items failed to pass because Dan Patrick and Dade Phelan hate each other so much that they only want their version of bills signed.
Initially, for the third special session, Abbott asked the legislature to pass:
Education freedom (vouchers)
Money for more wall
“Show Me Your Papers” bill
10-year minimum mandatory for having an undocumented person in your car
Public Safety (legislation to do with Colony Ridge)
Ending Covid restrictions (anti-free market)
Last week, Abbott added “teacher pay raises” to the agenda to incentivize the legislature to pass vouchers.
The only bills that wound up passing this session were SB4 and SB7. Both of these bills are still awful, but Texans got off easy considering the level of harm that Abbott was pushing for.
SB7 is an anti-free market bill prohibiting private employers from mandating their employees get a COVID-19 vaccination. If that company has employees who are elderly or immunocompromised, they cannot do anything to protect their health or lives. Otherwise, they’d be at risk of hefty $50,000 fines. This legislation is QAnon nonsense pushed by people who think Bill Gates is going to inject them with nanobots. It will probably be overturned in the courts.
Republicans have labeled SB4 as an anti-smuggling bill. However, the bill has nothing to do with smuggling. If you are caught having an undocumented person in your car, you are facing a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years, even if that person is a relative, a neighbor, or a friend. Democrat fought hard against this bill, but being outnumbered, the GOP still managed to ram it through. It’s unconstitutional and will likely be overturned in the court.
Every other agenda item failed.
Who’s fault is it?
Lt. Governor Dan Patrick sent an email stating it was Speaker Dade Phelan’s fault.
Speaker Dade Phelan issued a statement saying it was Lt. Governor Dan Patrick’s fault.
It’s both their faults, probably Patrick’s more than Phelan’s. These two legislative leaders are still furious with one another over Ken Paxton’s impeachment and are not on speaking terms.
The Senate held hearings on vouchers and teacher pay raises, but the voucher bill was complete garbage and offered 5% of the total budget to 1% of the students who would be entered into a lottery for voucher money. Abbott would never sign it because he stated any voucher bill has to be for all students. The Senat’s teacher pay raise bill worked with the voucher bill so that one wouldn’t work without the other.
The House wrote a voucher bill, but it was even more awful than the Senate bill. The House bill never got a hearing because they didn’t have Republican support in the House.
The House passed a “Show Me Your Papers” bill and border wall funding. But the Senate decided they didn’t like those bills and passed their versions. Since the Senate refused to take up the House bills and the House refused to take up the Senate bills, it killed those Republican priorities.
The Texas GOP has a super-majority and holds all branches of government, but they can’t even get the things they want done because they are in complete chaos. The Republican Party is no longer a viable political party. Their dying. Now, it’s up to all of us to pick up their pieces.
Tomorrow is election day. It’s your last chance to make your voice heard on 14 Constitutional Amendments. If you want to know more about those amendments or how to vote, I recommend Mothers Against Greg Abbott’s voting guide.
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