The Texas legislature meets every other year for 140 days (in regular session, special sessions can also be called.) This limits the mischief they can achieve, but it also means that all the damage they do inflict happens fast and furiously. I fully intended to be aware of all the goings-on in Austin this year, and even blog about some of them. But life decided I needed to be beaten up for the past several months, and I’ve sadly neglected important happenings in Austin.
Instead of regular posts about matters of importance, I’m doing this brief roundup of a few bills that are important to me. I realize I’ve probably missed some important stuff, so please feel free to leave links and info in the comments. (Not you, spammers.)
The first bill of concern has already passed the Senate, unfortunately. Senate Bill 303 would codify the right of doctors and hospitals to put Do Not Resuscitate orders on patients without the patients consent, and limits the ability of patients or their families to transfer to facilities that would honor their wishes. While doctors may be well trained and quite capable of making medical decisions, their knowledge does not give them the right to make value judgments on which lives are worth saving. Unfortunately, the Senate Bill passed the Senate and now goes before the House. Texas Right to Life has a great chart detailing the problems in the bill, the problems with current law, and what a good pro-life alternative would be. The companion bill to SB 303 is House Bill 1444. That bill is not yet scheduled for a vote, but the more calls the better. (You can find your representative here.)
Another pro-life concern is The Preborn Pain Bill, SB 25 and HB 2364. This bill would protect unborn babies who are capable of feeling pain from abortion. This bill hasn’t yet come up for a vote, although there have been hearings. So now is a great time to call your representatives.
Finally, non-life related, but definitely of interest to liberty lovers is this Animal ID bill. I only saw this yesterday, but it is concerning for a number of reasons, not the least of which is the fact that it comes rather out of the blue. I distrust politicians who try to sneak things past with little or no discussion. It also exempts commercial hatcheries and large confinement operations, meaning the burden falls solely on the smaller farmers. You should definitely do your own research, but the senate is voting on this today, so think fast. Then call and ask your senator to oppose SB 1233.
UPDATE: I totally forgot the Tim Tebow Bill. Bad homeschooler! This bill would allow homeschool students to participate in public school interscholastic activities in the district in which they live. Texas Homeschool Coalition has more here. The bill numbers are HB 1374 and SB 929. Both of these bills are still in committee and need calls to get them out. Call Rep. Jimmie Don Aycock, chairman of the House Public Education Committee and ask him to vote out HB 1374. That number is (512) 463-0804. In the Senate, call your own senator (found here) and tell him or her to vote for SB 929 and tell Senator Paxton of their support.
- Call your Representative and urge him/her to oppose HB 1444.
- Call your Senator and urge him/her to oppose SB 1233.
- Call both your Senator and Representative and ask them to support SB 25 and HB 2364, respectively.
- Call Rep Aycock and ask him to vote out HB 1374, and call your own senator and ask him or her to support SB 929.
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So what else have I missed? What other mischief are our legislators getting into in their 140 days of fun? Share your links in the comments.