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Thanks, Bob

After coming to the floor yesterday, the bill to (mostly) restore CHIP funding was sent back to the drawing board to try again.

A missing word in a bill analysis derailed debate Monday on a bill to cover more youngsters under the Children’s Health Insurance Program.

A sharp-eyed Rep. Robert Talton, R-Pasadena, noticed the error in the analysis of House Bill 109 — the word “family” was missing — and raised it shortly after the bill was brought up for discussion. As a result, the bill will be sent back to the House Human Services Committee for another vote.

The bill’s author, Rep. Sylvester Turner, D-Houston, said he thinks the committee will quickly move to pass the bill and send it to the House. He predicted it will pass in the House despite opposition from some Republicans who don’t want to expand the program, which provides insurance for families who earn too much for Medicaid but can’t afford private health insurance.

“We’ll be back even stronger and work even harder,” he said, citing bipartisan support.

The point of order is not a particularly big deal. This was a minor flaw, and there’s plenty of time to get it fixed, plus enough will to get it through the House, where it will run into the real problems across the hall. We’ll see if Tom Craddick’s promises to Sylvester Turner mean anything at that time.

The bit that really interested me in this story is right here:

Talton said he would be happy if the bill never came back out of committee, which passed it earlier this month, 8-1.

“I believe in limited government. I think people ought to pay for (health insurance) themselves,” he said.

Talton earned himself a certain amount of goodwill from Dems during the Speaker’s race, since he put himself pretty forthrightly at the front and center of the opposition effort. All well and good, but let’s all take a minute to read and reread that quote, so that when the 2008 elections come around we don’t feel any guilt in trying to unseat him. Much as I appreciate Talton’s efforts this January, we’re not getting a new Speaker as long as there are more Republicans than Democrats in the House, and we’re not getting more Dems in the House without picking up at least two if not three seats in Harris County. High on that list is Talton’s HD144, where the average countywide Democrat got 43% and Jim Sharp scored 46%. That’s a swing seat and it needs to be treated as such.

So thanks, Bob. Thanks for the reminder that while alliances matter, values matter more. I appreciate it.

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2 Comments

  1. Dennis says:

    I thought that Geico commercial was a joke. You mean cavemen really do exist?

  2. Penguin says:

    You really believe there won’t be another point of order on hb 109 when it comes back?