We’re where you want to be in New York City . . . at 55th St. and Seventh Avenue, close to business, City Center, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Coliseum, Fifth Avenue, 700 decorated, airconditioned rooms with private bath and free television . . . Fine restaurant, cocktail lounge and garage. TELE: 212 Circle 7-3900 NEW YORK’S or toll free 800/424-8820 ‘S fe le HOTEL ellingto 871 Seventh Avenue at 55th Street, N.Y.C. 10019 No hits, no runs, no errors closer in, but the EPA decided that the old coral reef called the Flower Gardens. Nobody ever doubted the U.S. Navy’s persistence. After failing to sell Wisconsin and Texas on the merits of Project Sanguine \(see Obs., April 27 and sighting in on the upper peninsula of Michigan. The New York Times reports that residents of the area, while not exactly up in arms yet, are not enthusiastic about the idea of living over a gigantic low-frequency antenna. The first issue of The National Star is out and it’s a doozer. On the cover alone, the Star promises the inside skinnies on a new boy miracle worker, “What really goes on in your child’s mind,” “KILL CITY USA,” Marilyn Monroe and some pertinent observations by Jacqueline Susann. The Star is the newest addition to a galaxy of 11 magazines and 80 newspapers in Australia, New Zealand, Great Britain and the U.S.A. They are all owned by Australian Rupert Murdoch, who recently acquired the San Antonio Express-News \(Obs., According to Tom Donnelly of The Wasington Post, “The thing about the Star that will strike American eyes as shocking and scandalous is not the content, which is tamer than Aunt Gussie’s parakeet, but the make-up, which suggests that moon-madness has infected the composing room.” The San Antonio papers have also taken on a rather startling appearance. Most of the lede paragraphs are set double column in extra-big type. And true to the Murdoch formula for titillation, the Express and News are devoting a heap more space to murders, auto accidents and other forms of carnage. ,if/P isEP gib 4rieb 10 The Texas Observer Austin As the Observer was going to press, the Constitutional Convention was just going back to work after its, two-day recess in memory of Rep. Hawkins Menefee. Even before Menefee’s death, the delegates’ mood had changed: it may have been only the passing of the exhilarating pitched battles over the education article, ‘ but floor debate seemed more subdued, if not downright 100 percent sober. The delegates worked through the short “Voter Qualifications and Elections” article in good order and went right to work on Article IV, concerning the executive branch. Their low-keyed consideration of these two sections may escape the kind of criticism the members received for their pains during the three weeks they argued over Article VII. THE DELEGATES have not been getting such great press of late. The Austin American-Statesman still runs at least one full page of coverage every day, and a front-page story most days. Most other papers, though, continue placing short wrap-ups deep inside, which does not make capitol reporters terribly happy. Then again, many of the reporters are as perturbed at the convention as at their editors. The Houston Post’s Felton West, for example, was peeved enough to begin one Sunday column this way: “Let’s hear it for the special interests. Yea! Hooray! They’re doing a great jobof protecting and helping themselvesin the Texas Constitutional Convention.” Reporters are not the only ones who have been critical of the convention’s progress. Several members of the Revision Commission, the blue-ribbon group that prepared a draft for the delegates’ consideration, used the disbanding of the CRC as an occasion for voicing their doubts about legislators’ performance. Even the convention’s president and ranking optimist, Price Daniel, jr., seemed to be concerned. As delegates began consideration of the executive article, he issued a statement urging them not to undercut efforts to strengthen the executive branch. He warned that he would actby proposing a delay in consideration of the articleif they went too far. And he called their performance in this sensitive, balance-of-powers area “a true test of the Legislature’s ability to sit as a constitutional convention.” The last word in negativism, though, came from one of the least likely quarters. Rep. Henry Sanchez of Brownsville, as good an ol’ boy as any, said he thought legislators had no business writing a constitution. And to prove he meant it, Sanchez said he wouldn’t take any more pay for helping to do it. While all this was going on, the delegates were working calmly on their draft constitution. Article VI, “Voter Qualifications and Elections,” took only two sessions to finish. It is short: about 200 words in the convention’s version, as compared to almost 900 in the present constitution. It is also about twice as long as the CRC draft. There were several reasons for the addition of language. One of them was a 12-word hedge on the right of felons to vote. The CRC included that right in its definition of “qualified voter,” provided the person not be “serving a sentence for a felony, whether incarcerated, on parole or on probation.” The convention’s Rights and Suffrage Committee reverted to present constitutional language, which permanently disfranchises convicted felons \(unless they obtain a pardon or go to court as a whole voted to let felons vote after serving their sentences, after long and fairly heated debate over “paying his debt to society” and “knowing what the consequences are.” But it added the words “subject to such further limitations on felons as the Legislature may provide.” The convention also added a much bigger chunk of verbiage to Section 2, “Additional Qualifications.” Sen. Babe Schwartz, who chaired Rights and Suffrage, had gone round and round with conservative Rep. Kay Bailey over the question of property ownership as a requirement for voting in bond elections. At one point Schwartz denounced a Bailey submission on the subject as “so radically reactionary as to be unbelievable.” At another, Bailey and four other members of the committee issued a statement calling some Schwartz mot “highly inflammatory, without foundation in law, self-serving and … incorrect.” When the dust settled in committee, Section 2 provided that the Legislature “may require property ownership as an additional qualification for voting in elections held by the state or its
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