TTAG reader DH writes:
For those interested in today’s aborted Texas House vote on Open Carry asking WTF just happened, here’s the skinny: turnabout is fair play. Or as they say “%$* me…no (*&!@# you…” . . .
Apparently, a computer error messed up the witness lists (basically who testified on, for or against) for over a hundred bills. Knowing this, and that Rep Phillips wasn’t going to accept many if any amendments to his bill, and that a majority already existed amongst the co-sponsors, Rep Trey Martinez-Fischer (D- San Antonio) called a point of order.
This was sustained, because he was in fact correct and the list was in error. The bill was returned to committee for correction. So, now I’ll see your point of order and raise you a point of order.
Unfortunately, for the opposition, the 84th Legislature convened at ten this morning. Rep Phillips, Chair of the Homeland Security and Public Safety Committee and Author of record for HB 910, convened his committee at 0800 and recessed after an hour and fifty minutes so members could attend the business of the floor. The committee would then reconvene after the floor adjourned. Normally, a public notice would have to be made for a committee hearing.
Since he had not adjourned, and this was considered pending business, he was able to reconvene, fix the errors and voted it back to the floor. So by plan or providence, his committee happened to be the same day as the floor vote and with sufficient scheduled work that it had to be recessed during house floor business.
The Open Carry bill will be back on the floor as soon as the Calendars Committee schedules it. My understanding is that the little point of order move spurred the supporters to action and they are hot to get it back on floor.
There is a simple majority with the co-authors/sponsors alone, so the only thing the opponents can do is stall through technicalities to run out the clock on session. I don’t think the Speaker will do much to help things along, so Chair Phillips is going to end up doing most of the heavy lifting. When it does hit the floor expect it to be a longer version of the Senate debate, with action from both the left and right.
Watch this space . . .