Texas Lawmakers AWOL For Vote On TSA Groping Bill
Paul Joseph Watson
As Simpson has emphasized, this bill is far from symbolic, it’s specific in its remit to “expand the federal definition of “official oppression” to prohibit federal employees from improperly touching a person’ s private areas”.
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, who to his credit doesn’t appear to be acting as a roadblock for the bill this time around, released a statement this afternoon saying that the Senate would try to pass the bill out of committee on Monday.
Despite a massive lobbying effort on behalf of public pressure groups that forced Governor Rick Perry to reverse his position and resurrect a bill that would ban TSA groping in Texas and place it on the special session of the Texas state legislature, lawmakers set to give the bill a hearing today bizarrely went AWOL, and the session was adjourned.
“The author of the bill that would restrict the ability of federal airport security agents from patting down the intimate body parts of travelers said Friday that he doubts the measure will pass during the current special session,” reports KXAN.
“This is not going to happen,” state Rep. David Simpson, R-Longview, said after the Texas House adjourned without acting on any legislation.”
Infowars reporters at the Capitol confirmed that the lawmakers had gone AWOL and were told there would be no further activity today. Under House rules, at least 100 members need to show up for any business to be conducted.
“I am disappointed that the House did not vote out the TSA bill today. It’s been delayed until Monday which puts us up against deadlines to get it out of the Senate before session ends next Wednesday,” Senator Dan Patrick, the bill’s primary sponsor in the Senate, wrote on his Facebook page.
However, the bill is not even on the calendar for Monday’s House session, suggesting it probably won’t be heard at all.
The fact that lawmakers have gone AWOL for a vote that was made possible by a huge outpouring of public pressure is only going to ensure a bigger backlash in the long run. It’s also possible that threats were made by the federal government in a repeat of the dirty tricks that were pulled to shoot down the first incarnation of the bill after it passed the House unanimously, when the Department of Justice threatened to impose a de facto no fly zone over Texas by shutting down airports. Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst was later identified as being instrumental in using the DoJ letter to intimidate Senators into mothballing the bill.
Despite the fact that Governor Rick Perry added the bill to the special session earlier this week and the majority of Senators indicated they would pass the legislation, this strange turn of events has placed the bill in jeopardy.
“(David) Simpson said Wednesday that he has enough votes in both chambers to move the bill, but suggested that, in his view, Perry appears lukewarm to the issue,” reports KXAN.
“I thought it would be a good campaign issue for him, not to go up against President Obama but because the TSA needs some big changes,” Simpson said.
In a statement released earlier this week, the TSA promised to take legal action if the bill was passed.
A video stream that was linked from the Texas Senate website disappeared at around 2pm CST. The video, which showed an almost empty chamber, was later replaced with a text entry which stated, “No program at this time.”
The current special session ends Wednesday, so unless a massive onslaught of public pressure is applied to Texas representatives over the next several days, the anti-groping bill will be dead in the water.
June 24, 2011