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Pho to by BM Br idg es signatures of people objecting to desegregation was presented to Gov. Allan Shivers. In response, Shivers placed three segregationist referenda \(preserving school segregation, strengthening laws against intermarriage, and supporting local rule over These passed by an overwhelming fourto-one margin in the state. Sentiment in counties with large Mexican American populations, however, was sharply divided. Bexar, Kleberg, and Uvalde counties refused to put the referenda on their ballots; Webb county voted against the measures by an eight-to-one margin; and twelve of the sixteen counties where the referenda passed less convincingly significant Mexican American populations. Encouraged by the overwhelming support of segregation, East Texas legislators introduced a dozen bills in 1956-57 that, among other things, would withhold state funds from integrated schools, would require integrationists to register with the secretary of state and would prohibit interracial sporting events: South and West Texas members of the House, whose school districts were partly integrated, fought a delaying action in the 150member House. But the first nine bills rolled through by votes in the neighborhood of 85 ayes to 50 nays, with some members abstaining. When the bills reached the Senate, the senators from the major Mexican American districts \(San Antosupport from the senators from Austin and Seguin began a filibuster to block the bills. Led by Henry B. Gonzalez of San Antonio and Abraham Kazen of Laredo, the “filibusteros” managed to mobilize sufficient support to block all but two of the bills. Newly elected Gov. Price Daniel, who had campaigned on the promise that he would use all lawful means to avert integration, signed the segregationist legislation. Despite his signing, Daniel attempted to assure his South Texas “Spanish-speaking supporters” that the new laws could not be used to segregate children of Mexican ancestry. After 1956 the race problem ceased to be a statewide factor in political campaigns and elections. In part this was due to the change in political guard that took place that year. Although supported by the same corporate interests, the new leaders Lyndon Johnson, Sam Rayburn, and Price Daniel were not as interested as the “Shivercrats” had been in maintaining a “red scare” mentality. The renewed consolidation of a liberal wing within the Democratic Party \(after also helped to moderate the racist rhetoric in politics. A coalition of urban liberals, church groups, labor unionists, and minorities constituted the core of this faction. By the mid-1950s the “labor liberals,” as they were commonly called, had developed a full-time leadership cadre, a fairly effective propaganda machine, an internal communications network, and a membership that thought it could win elections on occasion. Liberals began to challenge Juan Cornejo, who was active in the ‘first uprising” in 1963. conservatives aggressively, if not always successfully . The election of Ralph Yarborough to the U.S. Senate in 1957 \(after Yarborough had repeatedly lost liberal tenacity and influence. Another serious challenge was mounted in 1960 when the Kennedy campaign, antagonized by the hostile Texas party establishment, turned to groups excluded from the party machinery Mexican Americans, blacks, labor, and liberals. Kennedy’s narrow victory in Texas the strength of this urban coalition. In spite ‘of the rapid urbanization of Texas and the emergence of an important liberal Democratic faction, the rural conservatives were able to maintain tight control of the legislature. The key to such control was based on state constitutional limits on the number of representatives allowable per county and on pro forma redistricting, which had not significantly changed legislative boundaries since 1921. By the early 1960s, the counties containing the major metropoliFort sented. They were limited to five House representatives and four senators, when equal representation on the basis . of population would have yielded them 54 House members and ten senators. In this manner, the rural conservative bloc was able to contain repeated liberal challenges in the fifties and sixties. The entrenched position of the conservative bloc was abruptly upset in 1965 when the U.S. Supreme Court \(Kilgarlin invalidated the districting schemas for both legislative houses as well as the limiting provisions of the Texas Constitution. The stakes were clear. As the Texas Observer put it, “the country boys stand to lose out, but they still had the most power in the 1965 legislature and juggled everything that would juggle with purposes as transparent as a country boy’s leer.” In the Senate, a split among rural representatives facilitated the transfer of six seats to the urban districts at the expense of the rural-based “old guard.” Rug,a1 areas were reduced to 14 seats, urban-rural areas maintained their seven seats, and urban areas increased their number to ten. In the House, the conservative leadership was able to delay the impact of reapportionment for a few years. The 1965 plan, which gave the cities 16 members at the expense of rural independents, was thrown out in federal court in 1967. In turn, the 1967 legislature, more urban oriented than the previous House, accelerated the breakup of rural control by distributing nine more rural seats among urban and mixed urban-rural areas. A review of changes in the House composition illustrates the shift in power to the urban and urban-rural areas. In 1961 the rural areas had 85 seats, compared to 35 for the four major urban areas. By 1967 the rural seats had been reduced to 63, a loss of 22 seats, while the major urban centers had gained 17 seats for a total of 52. In addition, the eight urban-rural areas increased their representation from 30 seats to 35. In terms of legislation, the impact of reapportionment has been clear. After 1967, there were fewer legislators to support what urbanites consider rural prejudices. Legislation favorable to the urban areas has passed: the optional municipal sales tax, the creation of a state Department of Community Affairs, the location of new colleges and state courts in metropolitan areas, to mention a few examples. Farm-to-market roads have become less popular subjects of legislation while state highway programs have become more urban oriented. With THE TEXAS OBSERVER 11