52 ‘fugitive' Democrats are being rounded up after arrest warrants were signed by Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan late Tuesday for the group's dramatic political stunt of fleeing the state in an effort to block the passage of a GOP election integrity bill.
The warrants were issued just hours after the Texas Supreme Court temporarily suspended a Democrat Judge's order barring the arrest of the group. The Texas House of Representatives voted 89-12 to authorize state law enforcement to arrest the rogue lawmakers.
#UPDATE: Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan signed 52 civil arrest warrants for absent Democrats.
The warrants will be delivered to the House Sergeant-at-Arms tomorrow morning. The warrants command the Sergeant take the absent Democrats into custody and deliver them to the House. https://t.co/HKMhnLoCPQ pic.twitter.com/y2r7XnrOzD
— Election Wizard (@ElectionWiz) August 11, 2021
FIGHTING BACK: Rep. @ronereynolds says they are not done fighting arrest warrants. He says they have a full hearing coming up to get the judge's ruling. He's in D.C. & doesn't think the House will get quorum today. Here's what he says would happen if a Rep. gets arrested. @KHOU pic.twitter.com/RqRMzqgOpY
— Janelle Bludau (@JanelleKHOU) August 10, 2021
The new partisan arrest warrants are civil, not criminal, Republicans said.
“People aren’t going to jail, but they got to come back to work,” Republican state Rep. Mayes Middleton said.
Less than half of the renegade Lone Star cohort remains in DC as progressives pressure Dems who have returned to Texas to stay away from Austin. Several, including Rep. James Talarico, have returned to the House, further fracturing intraparty tensions.
“We had many heated debates in Washington as we debated our own next steps,” said Talarico. “I’m going to keep those arguments in private. But I know emotions are rightfully running high everywhere, and it’s been a difficult month.”
“You threw us under the bus today! Why?” Rep. Ana-Maria Ramos tweeted alongside a picture of Talarico and other Dems on the floor of the House.
Rep. Celia Israel returned to Austin but said “there is no way” she would go to the Texas House.
“Every day that we can not be on the floor doing business according to Gov. Abbott’s agenda is a good day,” Israel said.
Republicans needed five more lawmakers for a quorum to move forward with a tweaked voting measure Tuesday. The abridged proposal — among numerous restriction bills around the country influenced by former President Trump’s false election fraud claims — would ban 24-hour polling locations, drive-thru voting and give politicians more control of the voting process in the red state.
Source: NY Post