This is been a bad afternoon for the Democrats, all self-inflicted. Their game plan of asking pointless questions about local bills makes them look silly. (Randy Weber, of all people, spiked their strategy a few moments ago by saying that he had forgotten his bill book, so he couldn’t answer any of Chris Turner’s questions.) It’s a case study of a party that can’t decide what it wants to be when it grows up. The Democrats want it both ways: They want the privileges of being on the inside and the freedom to be on the outside. Politics doesn’t work that way.
The Democrats’ problem in Texas is that although the favorable/unfavorable view of the Republican party has declined from 62/26 in 2000 to 45/42 in 2008 (Texas numbers), the Democrats can’t close the deal with these disaffected voters. Their party’s favorable/unfavorable numbers have hardly changed over the last eight years. This juvenile display is not going to help.
I have heard some criticism of Sid Miller for raising a point of order that would kill the local calendar. I think he was within his rights to do so. This is not a reprise of Arlene Wohlgemuth’s Memorial Day Massacre. For one thing, Miller temporarily withdrew his point of order. He was saying, in effect, “Two can play this game. I may be able to get a ruling that the point of order is valid, and if I do, then the whole calendar falls. But if the Democrats will stop the chubbing and let the House pass the local calendar, I’ll withdraw the point of order.”
As everyone knows, the Democrats’ stalling tactics are an attempt to derail the Voter I.D. bill. It won’t work. This is Friday. They have to chub until Tuesday midnight. Not a chance.
And even if the Democrats were to succeed in chubbing Voter I.D. to death and other bills the D’s don’t like (TDI Sunset, Top 10 Percent), it wouldn’t matter. Perry will call a special session to pass the voter ID bill. Why are they fighting battles that they can’t win–and, worse, will hand Perry a victory?