While the special legislative session called by Texas Governor Greg Abbott was not without consequence, one of the primary reasons he called the session in the first place ended in failure.
State legislators were never able to find enough votes to pass their anti-transgender "bathroom bill" that would have prohibited transgender students from using bathrooms that correspond with the gender they identify as and the special session was abruptly called off last night.
In an unexpected move late Tuesday, the Texas House wrapped up its business a day ahead of the official end of the 30-day special session, killing any hopes the legislation could be revived in the 11th hour. This marks the second time the so-called "bathroom bill" failed to pass this year; similar proposals to restrict transgender bathroom use died during the regular session that ended in June.
Governor Abbott called the special session to pass the "bathroom bill," among several other things, because it failed during the legislature's regularly scheduled session. Passing the bathroom bill was the highest priority for Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick, a former right wing radio host who spends far more time thinking about which bathroom children use than any normal person should.
The Texas state legislature will not meet again until the spring of 2019 so it's possible this will not come up ever again, but Governor Abbott is not happy today because the bathroom bill is not the only bill that failed during the special session.
Abbott is threatening to call another special session to pass property tax reform.
"I’m disappointed that all 20 items that I put on the agenda did not receive the up-or-down vote that I wanted but more importantly that the constituents of these members deserved," Abbott said in a KTRH radio interview. "They had plenty of time to consider all of these items, and the voters of the state of Texas deserved to know where their legislators stood on these issues." [...]
"There is a deep divide between the House and Senate on these important issues," Abbott said in the interview. "So I’m going to be making decisions later on about whether we call another special session, but in the meantime, what we must do is we need to all work to get more support for these priorities and to eliminate or try to dissolve the difference between the House and the Senate on these issues so we can get at a minimum an up-or-down vote on these issues or to pass it."
If they didn't use the special session to pass bills that Abbott considers to be the most important, what did they pass?
Well, they passed an anti-abortion bill.
AUSTIN, Texas (Reuters) - The Republican governor of Texas signed into law on Tuesday a measure that will restrict insurance coverage for abortions, compelling women to buy a supplemental plan if they want coverage for the procedure.
Governor Greg Abbott said the measure known as House Bill 214 would protect abortion opponents from subsidizing the procedure. Democratic critics decried it as forcing people to buy "rape insurance."
You know, they may have been able to pass property tax reform if they had not wasted both the regular and special sessions on attacking abortion and transgender rights.
The Texas state legislature and government is home to some of the most batshit men in America so, if they can't pass a bathroom bill, I'd say the prospects of passing one in most other states are very slim.