Texas legislators – perhaps some of them at least – may have thought they were going home today.
Wrong. Gov. Rick Perry has whistled them back in for a special session to deal with – get ready – redistricting. You’ll recall the last time the Legislature met in special session on that matter. It was back in 2003 and it turned into a circus, with Democrats fleeing the state to prevent the Legislature from doing any business.
But the 83rd Texas Legislature did manage to do some things that few of us thought was possible. As the editorial from the Austin American-Statesman linked to this post notes, legislators demonstrated that bipartisanship doesn’t consign lawmakers to spend eternity in “the depths of hell.”
They passed a lot of good legislation with Democrats and Republicans working together to make it happen. Listen up, members of Congress. It can be done. See?
Perry’s special session call doesn’t figure to be as contentious as that earlier session on redistricting. Then again, one never knows when the issue turns to redrawing congressional and legislative districts. As the American-Statesman noted, “there can be no more partisan” endeavor facing lawmakers.
The late state Sen. Teel Bivins of Amarillo was fond of saying that redistricting was a time for “Republicans to eat their young.” He also could have thrown Democrats into that stew.