The Democrats prevailed again in Austin during the second attempt by the Republicans to carve up the state into bizarre districts designed to create a Republican stronghold in Congress:
A White House-backed power play to grab more Republican congressional seats from Texas has been derailed by Democratic opposition, at least temporarily.
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst (R) told reporters today that a redistricting plan that is expected to add seven Republican seats in the House did not have the votes to pass in a special session of the Texas Legislature that ends next week.
A similar effort in May led Democratic state legislators to flee to Oklahoma to break a quorum and prevent a vote on it.
Texas has 17 Democrats in Congress and 15 Republicans, but a proposed plan would give the Republicans 22 seats to the Democrats’ 10.
But the battle is not over:
Gov. Rick Perry (R), at the urging of Republican national leaders, called a special session this month to revive redistricting, but Democrats in the state Senate rallied enough support to scuttle it.
They have 11 seats in the 31-member Senate, but needed only that many votes because of a procedural tradition requiring two-thirds of the body to agree to take up a bill.
The current session will end Tuesday, but Perry has threatened to quickly call another special session. Dewhurst has said he may change procedures so that only a simple majority is needed to approve a vote on a bill.
Democrats are threatening to flee the state again if Republicans do not drop the plan.