I'm sorry, but this is just SOOO high school.
Which, I suppose, makes the antics of the AWOL Dems SOOO elementary school.
Redistricting is a racial issue. It was in the past, it is now, and it will be for generations to come.
Redistricting is only a racial issue for those who view party politics through a racial prism - minorities are Democrats, therefore anything which reduces the power of Democrats oppresses minorities.
As for "generations to come", I think the timeline will actually end with the mandated Justice Department certification of the eventual map under the processes of the Voting Rights Act - which, by definition, will certify that the voting rights of minorities have not been infringed.
Byron, you may recall that I proposed a different sort of compromise regarding the fines and other penalties, but one that also would have not required the infliction of any current consequences. This "probation" approach isn't particularly graceful, but it does advance the ball, I'll admit.
But what I have a real problem with is the attitude that because the Democratic Senators oppose redistricting, they're entitled to ignore the rules and to be exempted from all consequences from breaking them.
I'm not particularly surprised that during all the hue and cry about how Dewhurst supposedly "changed the rules in the middle of the game," nowhere in the popular press has there EVER been a reference to Senate Rule 5.03. But I'll bet you've read it, and I know every one of the Senators of both parties have, because they unanimously voted for it: "No member shall absent himself or herself from the sessions of the Senate without leave unless the member be sick or unable to attend."
There is no question whatsoever that the boycotting Senators deliberately violated that rule every single day they were in New Mexico. Zero.
So what consequence do YOU think there should be for that violation? Or do you think that because they yelp "Racism!" they should be free to violate the rules they themselves voted for at the beginning of the 78th Legislature?
The Democratic Senators' argument boils down to "I'm a minority [or I represent a majority-minority or minority-influenced district], and therefore everyone who disagrees with me on anything -- even if they have another obvious basis for their position, like Rule 5.03 -- is a racist."
I respectfully submit, sir, that you should feel more than just a little bit uncomfortable about that.