August 22, 2007
Craddick and Keel

Vince has been checking into the documents related to the highly unusual resignation and replacement of House Parliamentarian Denise Davis and Deputy Parliamentarian Chris Griesel, and he's found some interesting stuff.

Among the documents is a memorandum written by new House Parliamentarian Terry Keel, a former Republican legislator, three days before his appointment as interim parliamentarian (and before Davis' resignation) which set forth the claims Craddick continues to use to justify his refusal to allow members to raise a motion to vacate the chair.

In addition, the documents also reveal that both Davis and Griesel have taken serious issue with House Speaker Tom Craddick's characterization of their employment as being governed by the tenets of attorney-client privilege. Though both are themselves attorneys, documents released to Capitol Annex show that now are both represented by Austin attorney Charles Herring, Jr., and that Herring sent Speaker Craddick a letter challenging the claims he made upon their departure from their positions.

So Craddick got an opinion he didn't like, found someone who'd give him an opinion he did like, forced out the people who gave him the opinion he didn't like, and installed the person who gave him the opinion he did like. Neat. Oh, and then he told the people he forced out that they'd better keep their mouths shut about this, or he'd claim they violated attorney-client privilege.

Vince has more, including a timeline of events, and an explanation for why the Keel memorandum is a smoking gun. One wonders what AG Greg Abbott might think about that. Anyway, check it out.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on August 22, 2007 to That's our Lege