Texas House Republican Supermajority [UPDATED]

The Republicans will have a “supermajority” in the Texas House when the new session starts January 11, 2011 (01/11/11).

The new Republican House members are expected to give the GOP 101 seats in the lower chamber in the 2011 Legislature, a number that will allow the party to exercise power not seen in the House since the early 1980s, when the Democrats had more than 100 of the 150 seats.

With a supermajority, House Republicans will be able to conduct business and approve constitutional amendments without Democratic support.

Soruce: Dallas Morning News | Second Democrat in Texas House announces switch to GOP.

What does this mean for the Texas Constitution or the bi-annual, balanced budget in Texas? It means the Republicans have carte blanche to amend the Constitution, raise taxes and slash the budget.

This is a perfect storm. The Democrats lost the majority of the U.S. Congress which means few things will change in the next two years. (Although the Senate just pasted legislation extending tax-cuts and unemployment benefits.) I expect Texas taxes will go up and the budget (jobs) to be cut. Then, in 2013, the trend will continue at the federal level.

I just wrote about La Niña and the drought Texas faces from that. Now it appears we are headed for an economic drought as well. I wonder if there is a connection?


How will the federal tax cuts affect you? As promised the next 24 months (or two tax seasons) will remain at current levels. This may sound like an early Christmas present or simply a good thing, but look closer, it reads like the fine print of a credit-card offer: no interest ’till 2013. By then we may be out of the “economic ENSO cycle”, but be prepared to pay more for this tax cut than we would have originally. On the flip side, Obama probably doesn’t care too much because in 24 months he’ll be packing his things.

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — Now that Congress has passed the Tax Hike Prevention Act of 2010, it will be sent to President Obama for his signature. And taxpayers will have some certainty about their tax situation, if only for the next 24 months. Source: CNN.com | Tax cut deal: How it affects you

Obama a lame duck in less than a year

Tomorrow, January 21, is Obama’s first anniversary as president. Last night Massachusetts elected a Republican senator to replace Democrat Ted Kennedy after he left office in August for health reasons. This gives Republicans the necessary 41 votes to kill any legislation in the Senate. In one quick and decisive move the GOP has rendered Obama a lame duck less than one year after he took office.

Who would have thought that Teddy Kennedy would be succeeded in the U.S. Senate by a Republican? The GOP now has the necessary 41 votes to block anything that the Democratic Senate majority wants to do, from passing legislation to confirming judges. The White House has been very slow to fill judicial and U.S. attorney slots and have squandered that opportunity. The Democrats have achieved NOTHING, and now they can’t do anything without Republican votes. George W. Bush became a lame duck with two years to go when the Republicans lost control of Congress in the 2006 midterms. Obama may have become a lame duck for the remainder of his term. Source: Unhappy anniversary | BurkaBlog.

The health care bill that was before the senate seems all but doomed to fail in light of this election. Time will tell, but I don’t expect any helpful legislation coming from Washington any time soon.