SAN ANTONIO (KTSA News) — Who’s footing the bill? That’s question a lot of Texans are asking as dozens of the state’s Democratic lawmakers stay in Washington D.C, waiting out the Texas legislature’s special session.
The group jumped on a charter flight to D.C earlier this week, denying state Republicans the quorum needed to conduct business during the session.
It’s a move designed to block a vote on changes to election laws in Texas.
State Representative Trey Martinez Fischer tells J.D Hayworth on KTSA the protest is not being funded by tax dollars.
“The aircraft was chartered by the house democratic caucus, which is a political entity for house Democrats. Money was raised, just like campaign funds, campaign funds paid for the flight.”
Of course, the lawmakers aren’t going to sleep in tents in a D.C city park. Martinez-Fischer says the hotel rooms are being paid for by the campaigns as well.
“We moved so fast to get to D.C. I booked the very first night on my campaign credit card.I paid for 70 hotel rooms the very first night, right out of my campaign. Since that time, other members have put their credit cards on, so that we can divide the labor and share in the expense. So make no mistake, this is not a junket. Make no mistake there is not a special interest group footing the bill. Every member of the Texas house is stepping up and putting their skin in the game, just like a democracy.”
Martinez- Fischer went on the say that to his knowledge, no physical fund raising is being done in Washington and that everybody is trying to raise money back in Texas through online donations.
The contingent may be in the nation’s capitol for a while as the special session doesn’t end until early August and Governor Abbott is threatening to have the lawmakers arrested when they come back to Texas.
The NAACP is throwing its support behind the lawmakers. The organization has promised to pay their bail if they are arrested for staying away until the special session ends.