OK, so Texas is a big ol' state, and it's tough to govern. Now the Texas Legislature has taken it upon themselves to make it easier for the Governor to rule his state with almost unquestioned and unchecked authority. It really IS good to be King....
AUSTIN -- Gov. Rick Perry is supporting legislation this year that includes the most sweeping grab for increased gubernatorial power since Gov. Ann Richards' New Texas.
The Texas House today is scheduled to debate five massive government reorganization and fiscal accounting bills that would free up $2.8 billion toward balancing the state budget in the face of $9.9 billion in red ink.
The key piece of legislation -- House Bill 2 -- would set up a Cabinet-style government for Perry, much like one envisioned by Richards 12 years ago. Her effort died in the House.
House Bill 2 is a 418-page government reorganization plan that is so complex that even House Speaker Tom Craddick said: "I don't think anybody knows what's in this bill."
House Democrats complained that the legislation was set for debate without any lengthy public consideration and on the eve of Mother's Day.
Well, since I've had some time on my hands, I've taken it upon myself to read the bill, and I've discovered that it provides the Governor with a wide range of new powers. Here's a sample:
- The Governor will now be able to use X-ray vision to see through the dresses of young female interns.
- The Governor will be given the power and the opportunity to order the reorganization of every state agency not already under the control of an elected official. Sadly, this measure does not give the Governor political authority to sell the Dallas Cowboys. Pity.
- The Governor will be able to order the summary executions of fast food employees who prepare his hamburgers without the requisite amount of mustard.
- The Governor can require that all Texas history textbooks pay particular homage to the Holy Trinity- Sam Houston, William Travis, and George W. Bush.
- The Governor can require that all male appointed heads of state government agencies must certify that their hair meets the "remains stationary in a 30 MPH breeze" standard.
- The Governor will now be able to open each biennial session of the Legislature by deflowering and then sacrificing a young virgin.
That's right; power corrupts, but absolute power can be, well, a whole lot of fun....