When will the Texas 11 return?
The San Antonio Express reports on the ways in which the standoff might end.
Leaving may have been the easy part for 11 Texas Democratic senators who have been in Albuquerque, N.M., for nearly 30 days to stop GOP-driven congressional redistricting. Finding a way back to a normal Senate, with a quorum to do business, is the hard part — and not just for the Democrats, but for Republicans whose drive to install more GOP members of Congress is going nowhere as long as their colleagues stay gone.
With no sign of compromise, the Democrats' return may come through the doors of the federal courthouse in Laredo, where arguments will be heard Wednesday on their lawsuit challenging the way Republicans are handling the redistricting effort.
The Dallas Morning News reported yesterday,
House Democrats met with Senate colleagues Saturday to discuss ways to block future moves in the GOP redistricting drive.
The senators met with Terri Hodge of Dallas, Lon Burnam of Fort Worth and Ruth Jones McClendon of San Antonio. The meeting comes just days before the Legislature's second special session on redistricting is set to end.
Republican Gov. Rick Perry is expected to call a third special session on redistricting, and House and Senate Democrats must determine how to block redistricting efforts for a fourth time.
"We have a lot of options," Ms. McClendon said. "We wanted to get together and discuss those options."
Some cash may help the Democrats stay away. Reuters reports,
The grass-roots Internet group MoveOn.org said Saturday it expected to raise $1 million to support 11 Texas Democratic senators who fled to New Mexico over a redistricting fight.
The liberal, Web-based group, which has helped raise millions of dollars for Democratic presidential hopeful Howard Dean, launched a campaign earlier this week that will produce television ads and radio spots to criticize a White House-backed plan to redraw Texas congressional districts.
"This is the single biggest fund-raising campaign we have done on a single issue," said Zack Exley, organizing director for MoveOn.
As of early Saturday, the group had received about $850,000, with the average contribution about $30, he said. The campaign started after one of the 11 senators posted a letter on the site Tuesday.