The Senate's conundrum
Wed January 14, 2009 12:58 pm

What rules govern when the Senate is debating what rules govern? That's Sen. Eliot Shapleigh's question to Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst. This debate has slowed down Sen. Tommy William's resolution, which would change Senate rules to suspend the two-thirds rule for the Voter ID bill.

Dewhurst's answer was a little vague, prompting Shapleigh to ask:  "So the rules are just in your head?"

"We have no Senate rules. I left this matter in your  (the senators) hands," Dewhurst. It's clear Dewhurst wants to distance himself from this fracas.

Mario Gallegos has a good question:  Under what rules did we operate yesterday when we passed a resolution naming the officiers of the Senate. Then he raised the spectre of a walkout. "If we don't have any rules, then why are we here?  We could walk out."

Dewhurst: We have rules from previous session, I will use them as a guide and also use common sense.

Shapleigh's point is that William's resolution should be referred to a committee. He has raised a point of order that William's resolution should not be debated.

Dewhurst overrules him.

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