If Americans witness their government abusing power, wouldn't you want them to speak up?
The Texas Legislature is back at the Capitol today, trying to pass a bill that would wipe out access to safe and legal abortion for millions of women in the state. If this all sounds familiar, it's because we've seen this bill before.
It really would seem that for all of Rick Perry's mansplaining to State Senator Wendy Davis about her obligations as a mother and emphasizing his love for the "sanctity of life," he only seems to be "pro-life" when it's politically convenient.
Even for a white-hot prospect like Wendy Davis, charting a path into the governor's mansion is an exercise in hope that optimistic assumptions hold up, Republicans fumble immigration, and Gov. Rick Perry, who has yet to announce his re-election plans, gives Democrats one last chance to beat him.
Chicanery and complex scheming in politics isn't anything new, but the intensity and frequency -- not to mention the broad-daylight hubris of it all -- by the Republicans this week has been extraordinary to behold.
What Rick Perry and the GOP did by not only calling a special session to close virtually every abortion clinic in Texas, but also changing the date on the votes that took place after midnight, was a disgraceful slap in the face of all citizens everywhere. And they did not get away with it.
No matter how you feel about abortion, arguing against it by saying "every life matters" while you are, in fact, the nation's top killer of inmates is either disingenuous or downright phony.
What Rick Perry doesn't understand is that in attempting to win the battle for SB 5, he's starting what will be a war for Texas -- and demographics indicate that his side doesn't have the numbers in the long term.
What's happened in Texas graphically illustrates the choice facing America. We can adopt an extreme pro-business strategy and subordinate worker pay and safety. Or we can adopt a strategy that puts people first.
I support Senator Davis and I oppose the bill she fought against. However, that doesn't change my opinion of the filibuster tactic and the way it is used now, both in individual state senates and in the U.S. Senate.
In a state that sorely needed it, a few Texas Democrats put their foot down on the issue of women's reproductive rights and in the process likely awoke a sleeping giant.
Governor Perry and friends are fast tracking a bill that would essentially end access to safe and legal abortion throughout the state -- but folks from El Paso to Texarkana are coming right back with their own message: not without a fight.
They're still not sure what caused the explosion or how to prevent another one, but Texas officials are united on who should be held responsible. They all want the federal government to pay up.
Education should not be a partisan issue, and opposition to high-stakes testing has certainly become bi-partisan. But a partisan solution might be the only way to get there.
Why has Governor Brewer parted ways with her fellow Republican governors on this hot-button question? I suspect it's because she has looked behind the political rhetoric and understands a few key facts.
By conflating testing with curriculum, Perry's veto of a testing relief bill aimed at the playground set revealed that he doesn't understand what happens in Texas elementary schools.