Skip to comments.The 8 keys to survival for runaway legislators (AWOL Wisconsin RAT Fleas get coached by the pros)
Posted on 03/01/2011 12:14:59 AM PST by Libloather
The 8 keys to survival for runaway legislators
The "Texas 11" who fought Tom DeLay by fleeing to New Mexico have some advice for their Wisconsin counterparts
By Teresa Cotsirilos
Monday, Feb 28, 2011 20:30 ET
The future of American unions might come down to a game of political chicken. Unmoved by historic demonstrations against it, the Wisconsin state Assembly passed Gov. Scott Walker's union-busting bill last Friday amid raucous protests by Democratic lawmakers. Now, all that's preventing public sector workers in the state from losing their right to bargain collectively are the 14 Democratic state senators holed up across the state line in Illinois. If just one of them cracks -- or slips up and is caught returning to the state and compelled to come to Madison -- Walker's Republicans will have the quorum that has eluded them these past two weeks, and the bill will become law.
To understand what these senators are up against, we turned to four people who've been in the same spot before: Texas state Sens. Leticia Van de Putte, Rodney Ellis and Mario Gallegos and political consultant Harold Cook. In 2003, they fled to Albuquerque, N.M., with their fellow Democratic senators to prevent Tom DeLay's notorious mid-decade redistricting plan from passing. While their fight ultimately ended in federal court, their holdout lasted an impressive 46 days. From their experiences, we can offer the following eight tips for Wisconsin's Senate Democrats:
1. Watch your back and use the buddy system
2. Be a team player
3. Stay connected back home
4. Watch the wallet
5. "Feed the beast"
6. Conjugal visits are possible!
7. Have a Plan B
8. Good luck
(Excerpt) Read more at salon.com ...
Although, having a cowardly run and hide Plan A really can't be beat. (And just who came up with that brilliant idea?)
Everyone has got to click on the link and read the whole thing. It should win a prize for unintentional hilarity.
SNL is gonna do a skit about this, I just know it.
Remember, it’s only gonna take one to break ranks and come home and they will have a quorum. One of these fourteen is going to add up the emails and calls they get and do some calculating. Dems believe in saving their own hides uber alles. I can’t believe they’re all willing to commit hara kiri to make some kind of a point.
How did that work out for the Democrats in Texas? Weren’t they basically wiped out in the elections last Fall?
So, the people who refuse to be part of the team back in Madison, who run, flee and hide from the team, are admonished to be team players? As if. Rule #2 would mean they would suck it up and return home to do their duly-elected duty on the state's legislative team.
Havana would be a good hideout for them. They could be with like minded comrades.
Someone will come home today.
The redistricting was for US Congressional districts, and the effect was immediate: I think the Texas delegation picked up 4 Republicans, reflecting the typical voting patterns of Texas. The Democrats had been gerrymandering the state for a long time.
However, it didn't really affect the Texas legislature. I think that the Democrats even gained in 2008 (during Obamamania, and the disgust with McCain) to nearly gain control of the House: 76 Republicans and 74 Democrats.
The disgust with Obama is what got Republicans to the polls in 2010, and the House is now 101 Republicans and 49 Democrats. Some of the defeated incumbents were prominent in the quorum-busting soap opera.
But, the truth is that Presidential elections have had a lot of effect on Texas elections -- two years later. In 1994, two years after Clinton was elected, a "popular" incumbent Democrat governor (who was favored to win) was defeated in an upset -- by George W. Bush.
BTW, the article is wrong: the redistricting issue wasn't ultimately decided in court. The governor called a special session of the legislature. The Senate Democrats tried the same quorum-busting, but ultimately one conservative Democrat broke ranks and returned to the capital.
I'm actually surprised that he participated in the tactic: he has a reputation as a good guy, and is a "relic" of an era when many Democrats in Texas would have been Republicans anywhere else. I keep wondering if he will ever switch parties.
“Someone will come home today”.
I sure hope you’re right, EQAB.