Last week, over 50 Texas Democratic lawmakers literally boarded private planes and fled the state in an attempt to kill a vote on a controversial, Republican-backed voter reform law, not unlike the bills recently passed in Georgia and Arizona.
Republicans in the state, including Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, threatened swift and decisive retribution against the Democrats for shirking their elected duties, and according to PJ Media, the first wave of punishments seems to be happening as a top Texas Democrat was just stripped of his powerful leadership post.
State Rep. Joe Moody (D) is the first Texas Democrat included in the group of fleeing state lawmakers to experience real consequences for his actions after House Speaker Dade Phelan (R) announced Moody has been stripped of his powerful position as speaker pro tem.
While Speaker Phelan failed to provide a statement concerning the announcement, it was reported that Moody’s demotion was effective immediately.
Texas state Republican leadership has experienced increased pressure over the past several days to begin stripping fleeing Democrats of various committees and titles. While some of those punishments require a vote, Texas Republican Party Chairman Matt Rinaldi confirmed that some House leaders have the ability to remove certain titles with the stroke of a pen.
Moody released a statement upon finding out that he’d been removed from his position, according to The Texas Tribune.
“The most important titles in my life will never change: Dad, Husband, El Pasoan,” Moody’s statement read. “Nothing political has ever even cracked the top three, so nothing has changed about who I am or what my values are.”
Notably, Moody is — or was — reportedly one of Speaker Phelan’s top Democratic allies in the Texas House, though that relationship has likely changed in the wake of the latest news.
Only time will tell what happens to the rest of the Democrats who took a mini-vacation to Washington D.C. in an effort to delay the passage of a bill that will more than likely eventually be passed, but something tells us that there could soon be many regrets from taking part in the charade.