Texas state Rep. Senfronia Thompson — among many Democratic lawmakers who fled the state as a way of hampering the passage of a Republican-led election security bill — likened the arrest threat from Gov. Greg Abbott (R) to the plight of runaway slaves.
“We refuse to be a hostage, to remain a hostage within the state of Texas,” Thompson said at a Friday news conference. “And I know that there are search warrants out for us, and I’m ready to be arrested. What do you do to a slave if you don’t do nothing but arrest them when they flee?”
“We fled Texas, and if they want to arrest me, go ‘head,” Thompson added. “I’m ready to be arrested.”
“We refuse to be [hostages]…I am an American and I want to vote.”
We are simply asking for the right to vote. Demo… https://t.co/IFvij8TySc
— Texas House Democrats (@Texas House Democrats)1626537508.0
What’s the background?
Texas Democrats said the moves by Republicans to ensure election integrity — such as implementing new voter identification requirements for people voting by mail and banning election officials from sending unsolicited mail ballot applications to voters — make it harder for minorities to vote.
With that, nearly 60 Texas Democrats chartered two private planes to the nation’s capital about a week ago, effectively denying the state legislature the two-thirds quorum needed to conduct official business. Abbott declared the Democratic lawmakers would be arrested once they return to Texas.
While the left endlessly celebrated the lawmakers’ self-described freedom-fighting field trip, some rather unanticipated consequences resulted — such as COVID-19 cases among them. But what do they expect after not wearing masks on their flights like their constituents have to, correct?
What’s more, it turns out the fleeing Democrats’ attempt at political theater will do little more than cost them a ton of money.
Texas state Rep. Armando Walle (D) told NBC News the trip will have cost about $1.5 million by the time they all are done with the stunt in early August.
“Walle said the pair of private charter jets the majority of legislators took to Washington cost more than $100,000, while housing, food and other transportation costs will make up the bulk of other expenses,” NBC News reported.
And while the Texas House Democratic Caucus pledged that taxpayers won’t be on the hook for the lawmakers’ D.C. trip, the special session they’re abandoning can cost taxpayers over $1 million since it looks to be a wasted meeting with no official business being done.