Yesterday at 12:18 p.m. CST a Texas Representative reintroduced the Texit Bill for consideration by the Texas Legislature. This bill would create a committee of the Legislature’s ranking officers to study how Texas might secede from the Union.
Details of the Texit Bill
Rep. Bryan Slaton (R-Greenville) represents the Second House District. Last summer he introduced a bill to forbid “drag shows and other inappropriate displays” to minors in Texas. More importantly, two years ago he introduced a bill to finish building the border wall. HB 2862 would build the wall along the Northern Rio Grande Valley with Texas funds.
Yesterday he introduced HB 3596, the “Texit Bill.” It immediately proposes a referendum, this November, on creating a Texas Independence Committee. The members of this Committee would include the Lieutenant Governor, the Speaker of the Texas House, and four each Senators and Representatives, whom their respective chamber presiding officer would appoint – except that the bill reserves two seats on this Committee for the Chairmen of the House and Senate Committees on State Affairs.
Among the issues this Committee would consider:
- Amending the Texas Constitution. An independent Republic of Texas would need new officers, and change the duties of some existing officers. Certain provisions relating only to the status of Texas as a State would become obsolete. In addition, Mr. Slaton’s bill proposes recognizing certain rights one currently finds only in the federal Constitution.
- Changing Texas laws, with respect to new agencies and new charters for existing agencies. Slaton also wants to provide for “necessary and desirable” federal functions that do not yet have State counterparts.
- Functionally transitioning Texas from State to independent Republic, and
- Recommending whether (or not) to join any “international convention or multilateral agreement.”
History of Texas secession efforts
Mr. Slaton put out a long tweet embedding an image of his press release.
The tweet also has a link to an online petition Slaton created to measure support for this bill. In his press release he took note that Rep. Kyle Biedermann (R-Fredericksburg, Texas) introduced a Texit bill two years ago. Unfortunately, Biermann’s bill (HB 1359) died in committee, an event Texans call “chubbing,” which means creating procedural delays. But some of the “chubbers” found themselves “primaried” out of office before the next Midterms could even take place.
Kyle Biedermann retired to private life after watching the “chubbing” of his bill. Bryan Slaton seems to have taken the lead in pushing for Texas independence following Biedermann’s retirement.
The Texas Nationalist Movement also published its own downloadable copy of the Texit Bill’s text. CNAV has inspected copies available from TNM and the Texas Capitol and found them identical. TNM also reports poll results showing two-to-one support for Texas secession. In fact, Texas is one of eight States that SurveyUSA surveyed for its report. TNM has pushed for Texas independence for more than a quarter century.
Interestingly, no one seems to have asked American residents outside of Texas whether they would gladly join an independent Texas.
Reaction to the Texit prospect
The best measure of reaction to the Texit reintroduction are the replies Bryan Slaton has gotten to his tweet. That reaction varies from “Go for it!” to “What are you, crazy/stupid?” Two users shared an animated graphic saying simply, “It’s time for Texas independence.”
Most reaction was positive – but by no means all. This user, for instance, considered the measure pointless virtue signaling.
He evidently didn’t read the bill – but then again, Mr. Slaton didn’t include any links to its text.
Another user expressed this wish:
In fact, Travis County, which includes Austin (the capital), is the most liberal county in all of Texas. Texas cities also follow the typical pattern of voting more Democratic while the rural areas vote more Republican. One user even named a list of cities he projected would not want any part of an independent Texas.
Interestingly, he did not name Fort Worth or Galveston. He did, however, name every other city at the corners of the Texas Triangle.
Feeling on both sides seems to run very hot. Opponents accuse Slaton of treason, or of wanting to establish white rule. Whoever says that, should remember that Allen West expressed support for Biedermann’s Texit bill.
In another indication of the enthusiam for this bill, the TNM site started crashing and timing out at about 2:00 p.m. CST. As of 2:20 p.m. CST, a Cloudflare message declared the site offline.
Current federal policy and Supreme Court advocacy, especially on immigration and “alternative lifestyles,” drives the Texit movement today. The introduction of a new Texit Bill will measure the strength of grass-roots support for Texas independence. Again, several Texas legislators, responsible for killing the first Texit bill, are no longer in office. Outraged constituents “primaried” them.
Significantly, the new Texit Bill is clearly better than the last. It has a much longer list of concerns that actual Texas secession would raise. That shows that Bryan Slaton has thought much more about the issue than Kyle Biedermann did. It could also mean that he has taken the intervening two years to consider the proposition, and objections to it. Which is to say, the Texit Study Committee would have a much better charter for making hard-and-fast recommendations.
To reply to one persistent objection, the Texit Bill calls for negotiation of a Social Security totalization agreement. Totalization agreements are tax treaties covering foreign workers in the United States. Foreign parties to a totalization agreement can see their citizens or subjects receive some social Security and/or Medicare benefits and not pay dual taxes.Rep. Slaton obviously wants to address the concerns of Texans who have paid into Social Security and Medicare, who fear losing their benefits with secession.
Is this enough to overcome remaining opposition? It might not be, because legislators have concerns having nothing to do with popular sentiment. And some “chubbers” remain. Can Slaton win them over, or win without them? Stay tuned.
Terry A. Hurlbut has been a student of politics, philosophy, and science for more than 35 years. He is a graduate of Yale College and has served as a physician-level laboratory administrator in a 250-bed community hospital. He also is a serious student of the Bible, is conversant in its two primary original languages, and has followed the creation-science movement closely since 1993.
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