Chapter 10 - Chapter 10 Is There a Democratic Endgame I The...

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Chapter 10: Is There a Democratic Endgame? I. The Democrats in the Texas House of Representatives had successfully killed the Republican redistricting bill during the regular session by leaving Texas and denying the Republican-controlled legislature the quorum needed for legislative action. The democrats in the Senate, along with Republican senator Bill Ratliff, had successfully killed redistricting in the first special session. II. A second special session appeared likely, the unanswered questions were whether Democratic senators too would try to break a quorum, whether they could organize themselves and flee Texas, and whether such a boycott would ultimately stop the Republican redistricting offensive. III. Senators are historically more independent than their House counterparts. The likelihood of the twelve Democratic senators staging a walkout appeared small to many observers, requiring an unachievable level of mutual trust, coordination, and individual and political will. IV. During the last week of the session, however, Democratic senators began to meet regularly in small groups and together as the Democratic Caucus to seriously consider the possibility. As the calling of a second special session became a certainty, the Democratic senators decided to prepare for a possible boycott, which would break quorum and prevent the adoption of a Republican redistricting plan. It soon became apparent, however, that something more dramatic might be necessary. V. Planning a Boycott A. The Senate Democratic Caucus authorized its president, Leticia Van de Putte, to make the logistical arrangements for the walkout. Looked for a state near Texas one where the governor was a Democrat and a destination city with a good heart hospital for Van de Putte. Se decided on Albuquerque, New Mexico, but kept this destination secret from her colleagues. B. Several outside consultants and attorneys were advising the Democratic senators during the period. Nevertheless, the Democratic senators insist that the decision to boycott was solely their own. C. The overriding question for the Democratic senators was how long to stay gone to achieve victory. There was no consensus. House Democrats had beaten redistricting through a walkout; it was difficult for these senators to now refuse to try to do the same.
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D. Circumstances were very different: they’re no constitutional deadline equivalent to the one that had benefited the house members. E. It was clear that the maximum number of senators likely to participate in any boycott was the maximum needed to break a quorum. Of the senators that were going to boycott only two of the senators are African American, two are Anglo and seven are Hispanic. The failure of any of them to leave the state would prevent an effective boycott; a return by any of them would end the boycott.
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Chapter 10 - Chapter 10 Is There a Democratic Endgame I The...

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