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The Flag of the World

-G. K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy

This here blog is a glimpse or two or three at the condition of the 'fortress of our family' through the eyes Timothy Goddard, a Christian writer with an unhealthy interest in politics living in the Puget Sound area.

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Tuesday, May 13, 2003

 

Don't Fence Me In
In a show of sheer defiance, 53 Texas Democrats have fled the Lone Star State, seeking refuge from their Republican counterparts and a piece of legislation they just can't shake. Across the border in Oklahoma, just beyond the jurisdiction of the Texas Rangers charged with their arrest, the legislators sit, surrounded by a protective phalanx of lawyers, sipping coffee and making calls on their cellular phones.

The bill they're resisting is one of the most flagrant pieces of gerrymandering* to come down the pike in years, an attempt to redraw Texas' 32 congressional districts into more GOP-friendly shapes, among them an elephant and a large cash donation. The proposed redistricting would favor Republican candidates, potentially shifting the balance of power in the national House of Representatives. By refusing to be present for the vote and negating the possibility of a quorum, the Democrats are effectively blocking this geographic brouhaha.

While the Democrats are slumming at a Denny's just over the border, the Republicans have behaved much more maturely. Today, they
plastered the missing Democrats' faces on milk cartons and distributed decks of playing cards picturing the Democrats in the style of most-wanted Iraqis.

I'm anxious to see how this turns out. Will federal troops be forced to drag the Dems back to Austin, kicking and screaming? And how will that work, since the current Commander-in Chief is a Texas Republican? Are the Denny's bills still tax-deductible? Will we ever know?

*Gerrymander: deliberately redrawing district lines to favor a political party. For Elbridge Gerry, governor of Massachusetts, whose 1812 state redistricting produced a district in the shape of a salamander.
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