Dumb and Dumber, the Sequel

Michael Galloway, Republican, The Woodlands, 32. and Drew Nixon, Republican, Carthage, 37.

Last session, passionate debate raged through the Capitol over which of these two East Texas freshmen was the worst member of the Senate. Given a second chance, Galloway and Nixon showed that they had learned…absolutely zero.

He doesn’t have two sessions of experience,” a Republican colleague said of Galloway. “He’s had one session twice.” A lamb in the legislative slaughterhouse, Galloway was so inept at passing laws that whenever he made the attempt, senators whispered to one another sotto voce, “First bill! First bill!”—the phrase used to alert one another that it’s time to engage in the ritual hazing of a freshman making his initial try to pass a bill. Not that they needed an excuse to ask embarrassing questions: With Galloway, any question was likely to prove embarrassing. During debate over a bill to allow Houston to build a sports arena with tax revenue, Galloway tried to restrict the use of local sales taxes. “Does this amendment have statewide applicability?” a colleague asked. Galloway didn’t have a clue. “It was not intended to do so, but it may very well” came his opaque reply.

One reason no one took him seriously was that Galloway didn’t take himself seriously. He acted like a lost frat boy from the UT campus who had strayed into the Capitol by mistake, never catching on to the fundamental rule of the clubbish Senate: The way to acceptance starts with decorum. During a somber debate over voluntary castration of sex offenders, Galloway—whose pet project for the session was to lop off Kingwood from the city of Houston—decided that it was a fine time for juvenile humor: “Would you consider this dis-annexation?” he smirked.

He did pass a bill through the Senate containing a method for disannexing Kingwood (after losing on his first try because he failed to determine if enough of his supporters were present), but when it bogged down in the House, he became increasingly frantic. Near the end of the session, he tried to strike back at

Tags: POLITICS

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