Top Texas emergency? Give Las Vegas a call

SMU Political Science Professor Cal Jillson talks about Texas Governor Rick Perry's tactics in identifying some legislation as emergency items.


AUSTIN — Word came from Las Vegas last week: Voter identification legislation is among the emergencies facing Texas lawmakers this session.

The official notice actually came from Gov. Rick Perry's Austin office. But Perry himself was in Las Vegas the same day, selling his book Fed Up! at the SHOT — Shooting, Hunting, Outdoor Trade — show.

The governor even posted a photo on Twitter taken there with buddy “Uncle Ted” Nugent, asking people to stop by. Perry's people often note he can take care of state business wherever he is. He also added a call for a balanced-budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution to lawmakers' emergency list while in Vegas. . .

Cal Jillson, a political scientist at Southern Methodist University, said Perry is pushing all the hot buttons he can reach.

"Voter ID, a national balanced budget amendment, and, most recently, the abortion sonogram bill, are not emergencies in the common sense meaning of the term. But they are dear to the hearts of conservatives, and Perry wants to make those hearts flutter," Jillson said.

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