Texas voters elected a majority in both chambers who label themselves as pro-life. When it comes to raw floor votes, pro-lifers clearly have the majority, as evidenced by Sunday’s 95-34 House SB 5 vote and the Senate’s 19-10 vote. All session, there was a strong, loud faction of those 95+ representatives who repeatedly called for pro-life legislation to be laid before them (including, but not limited to, Reps. Bryan Hughes, Linda Harper-Brown, Chariman Smithee, Matt Krause, Stephanie Klick, Cindy Burkett, Jodie Laubenberg, Bill Zedler, Jeff Leach, Giovanni Capriglione, Scott Turner, Steve Toth, Rick Miller, etc.) . So what happened?
Wendy Davis was given the opportunity to kill Senate Bill 5. Since Sunday, chaos was allowed to run the Texas Capitol. Texas Democrats were allowed to chub all night Sunday and in the final 1.5 hours of last night’s debate. The relevant question to ask is why was time on their side? Despite the fact that Wendy and I differ starkly in what we view as right and wrong, I can only hope that if I ever attempt a filibuster, I’m as eloquent and look half as good as she did at 50 years old.
Did the Dems cause the demise of SB 5? No, Wendy was given an opportunity and seized the chance to stand up for the values she campaigned on. Now, let’s take a little trip down memory lane and figure out who actually killed Senate Bill 5….
A Republican-majority in both chambers has been here since January. The measures of Senate Bill 5 were filed in March, but language had been substantially discussed with members before the Legislature ever gaveled in. The Preborn Pain bill (HB 2364) sat in the House State Affairs committee for nearly two months. The 30-mile bill (HB 2816) hung out in the House Calendars Committee for about two weeks, despite the creeping deadline of when House bills could be heard on the House floor. After passing favorably out of committee in April, the ambulatory surgical bill (SB 1198) never quite managed to make it to the Senate’s Intent Calendar.
Those in charge had to be demanded by the Governor to allow pro-life legislation onto the chambers’ respective floors.
Conversations in the marble halls during regular session went a little something like this: “Well, pro-life issues are important, and I’m a solid vote on the floor, but we’ve got other important issues to deal with first, like transportation.” Well guys, congratulations, you got neither done. I sure hope to see you all in July.
Pro-Lifers have done well in the past two elections in electing members who are compassionate about the LIFE issue. But they’re still newbies. These classes can only do as much as leadership allows them to do. As the good guys and gals are re-elected, the more influence the solid ones can garner. In the meantime, we need to diligently continue recruiting and voting in candidates who show up and work towards a culture of life in the Pink Dome, not those who merely vote for such a measure if one happens to come across their desk. The abortion-on-demand Dems do. Well, except the “show up” part- you can never be entirely sure on that one.