Two Thirds? Or Not Two Thirds?
With another special session set to begin on July 1, the issue arises of how the Senate will handle the two-thirds rule. Will there be a blocker bill? Will the tradition be honored?
The history is that in 2003, Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst made the decision that the two-thirds rule would not apply in a redistricting session. That precedent has remained in place, but for redistricting only. So the issue now arises, what will Dewhurst do in a session when abortion is the major issue? The practice since that time has been to allow the two-thirds rule to take effect in special sessions. If the rule remains in effect, of course, Democrats would have the votes to block the abortion bill, which would put Dewhurst under tremendous pressure to change the rules. After the fiasco of the Davis filibuster, it’s hard to believe that Dewhurst would do anything that could help Democrats. We’ll know soon enough.