Although State Rep. Senfronia Thompson was able to use a point of order last Tuesday to temporarily stall HCR 50, a resolution affirming Texas sovereignty, the resolution passed today by a vote of 99 to 36.
State Rep. Brandon Creighton, HCR 50's primary author, has said it has nothing to do with secession and “everything to do with [Texas] succeeding in the union.”
During the debate on the House floor today, Rep. Richard Raymond asked Creighton if he thought local governments should be able to reject laws made at the state level, a point that proponents of HCR 50 would like to ignore.
Rep. Garnet Coleman made a powerful argument against the resolution, via the Statesman:
Coleman cautioned that Texans need to be careful when talking about “state’s rights.”
“Growing up in the South, there are certain words that bring up certain emotions,” Coleman said, emotions connected to the denial of rights.
Here is an excerpt from the resolution:
WHEREAS, The scope of power defined by the Tenth Amendment means that the federal government was created by the states specifically to be an agent of the states; and
WHEREAS, Today, in 2009, the states are demonstrably treated as agents of the federal government;
RESOLVED, That this serve as notice and demand to the federal government, as our agent, to cease and desist effective immediately, mandates that are beyond the scope of these constitutionally delegated powers; and, be it further
RESOLVED, That all compulsory federal legislation that directs states to comply under threat of civil or criminal penalties or sanctions or that requires states to pass legislation or lose federal funding be prohibited or repealed
Last month, just a few days before the “Tea Parties” were held, Rick Perry held a press conference to announce his support for the bill.
I believe that our federal government has become oppressive in its size, its intrusion into the lives of our citizens, and its interference with the affairs of our state.
That is why I am here today to express my unwavering support for efforts all across our country to reaffirm the states’ rights affirmed by the Tenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. I believe that returning to the letter and spirit of the U.S. Constitution and its essential 10th Amendment will free our state from undue regulations, and ultimately strengthen our Union.
Last week, the Statesman's Jason Embry called HCR 50 “the measure that Perry has most associated himself with” yet today it passed easily and did so with the support of some Democrats.
Thank you to the House Democrats who stood up against HCR 50 today.