Laney’s Supporters HOUSE MEMBERS and House memberselect whose names were released by Pete Laney as “pledged”supporters. Italicized typeface denotes representatives-elect. Clyde Alexander, D-Athens; Ray Allen, R-Grand Prairie; Robert Alonzo, D-Dallas; Leo Alvarado , D-San Antonio; Kip Averitt, RWaco; Kevin Bailey, D-Houston, Hugo Berlanga, D-Corpus Christi; Layton Black, DGoldthwaite; Kim Brimer, R-Fort Worth; David Cain, D-Dallas; Ben Campbell, R-. Lewisville; John Carona, R-Dallas; Warren Chisum, D-Pampa; Garnet Coleman, DHouston; Karyne Conley, D-San Antonio; John Cook, D-Breckenridge; David Counts, D-Knox City; Tom Craddick, R-Midland; Debra Danburg, D-Houston; Yvonne Davis, D-Dallas; Wilhelmina Delco, D-Austin; Dianne White Delisi, R-Temple; Betty Denton, D-Waco; Joe Driver, R-Garland; Robert Earley, D-Portland; Al Edwards, D-Houston; Bernard Erickson, R-Burleson; Charles Finnell, . D-Holliday; Yolanda Navarro Flores, DHouston; Pete Gallego, D-Alpine; Helen Giddings, D-Dallas; Bob Glaze, D-Gilmer; Patti Gray, D-Galveston; Sherri Greenberg, D-Austin; Will Harnett, R-Dallas; Christine Hernandez, D-San Antonio; Allen Hightower, D-Huntsville; Harvey Hilderbran, R-Uvalde; Fred Hill, R-Richardson; John Hirschi, D Wichita Falls; Scott Hochberg, D-Houston; Steve Holzheauser, R-Victoria; Sam Hudson, D-Dallas; Bob Hunter, R-Abilene; Todd, Hunter, D-Corpus Christi; Delwin Jones, RLubbock; Jesse Jones, D-Dallas; Robert Junell, D-San Angelo; Dan Kubiak, DRockdale; Pete Laney, D-Hale Center; Libby . Linebarger, D-Manchaca; Ken Marchant, RCoppell; Mike Martin, D-Galveston; Glen Maxey, D-Austin; Huey McCoulskey, DRichmond; Nancy McDonald, D-El Paso; Nancy Moffat, R-Fort Worth; Anna Mowery, R-Fort Worth; Keith Oakley, D-Terrell; Steve Ogden, R-Bryan; Rene Oliveira, D-Brownsville; Pete Patterson, D-Brookston; Allen Place, DGatesville; Tom Ramsay, D-Mount Vernon; Irma Rangel, D-Kingsville; Richard Raymond, D-Benavides; Ciro Rodriguez, D-San Antonio; Sylvia Romo, D-San Antonio; Sue Schecter, D-Houston; Curtis Seidlits, D-Sherman; John Shields, R-San Antonio; Bill Siebert, R-San Antonio; Ashley Smith, R-Houston; Dalton Smith, RHouston; John Smithee, R-Amarillo; Mark Stiles, D-Beaumont; David Swinford,’ R-Dumas; Robert Talton, D-Pasadena; Barry Telford, D-Dekalb; Senfronia Thompson, DHouston; Bob Turner, D-Voss; Sylvester Turner, D-Houston; Tom Uher, D-Bay City; Buddy West, R-Odessa; Ron Wilson,. DHouston; Ken Yarbrough, D-Houston. lators to represent clients before the Workers’ Compensation Commission, Department of Criminal Justice and the Board of Pardons and Paroles. It was tabled by a 75-62 margin, with Laney voting with the majority. Nor is Laney’s opposition to open government and ethics reform a recent development. In the book on the Sharpstown Scandal, The Year they Threw the Rascals Out, Charles Deaton considered the most important reform votes offered up in response to the banking and insider-trading scandal that ended the public careers of then-Lt. Gov . Ben Barnes and thenHouse Speaker Gus Mutscher Jr. \(Actually, Mutscher’s career as a public servant did not end then. After his conviction on conspiracy to accept a bribe, he was elected county judge in Washington County. Perhaps his indictment on mail fraud charges separate from the Sharpstown scandal last week will end his Laney voted against every One of the eight measures that Deaton described as the most important reform votes of the 1973 season. Financial disclosure, for example, was an important component of the post-Sharpstown ethics bill. When reformers attempted to overturn an amendment that would have sealed, in the absence of probable cause, the financial statements of legislators. Laney voted with the majorityin a 71-70 vote to keep legislators’. financial records sealed. When, a week later, reformers attempted to undo the damage done to the bill and require the financial holdings of legislators to be available for public examination, Laney again voted with the majority to keep records sealed. When on March 8, 1973, a final version of the ethics bill was brought to the floor, reformers described the bill, gutted by amendments, as a “mockery and a fraud.” Laney voted with the majority to enact the bill. Laney also opposed a 1973 reform measure proposed by then-Rep. Wayne Peveto, which would have killed the Ethics Commission and moved its function and authority to the Secretary of State’s office. The measure was defeated 9647. Another measure would have allowed any citizen to spend ‘any amount of money lobbying his own representative or senator, or the governor or lieutenant governor, without being required to register as a lobbyist. It was rejected by a 72-72 tie, with the Speaker voting to break the tie. Laney was among the 72 voting in favor of the measure, designed to make high-dollar lobbying easier. When Tom Uher, D-Bay City, offered up an amendment weakening the. Open Meetings Bill, Laney voted for it. What Uher proposed was exempting from open meetings requirements all meetings of government bodies where personnel matters would be discussed. The Uher amendment, considered on Jan. 29, 1973, even exempted personnel meetings from public posting, thus assuring almost complete secrecy in part of the deliberative process. On another reform measure, pertaining to the office to which he will formally be elected in January, Laney voted to allow unlimited and unreported spending by friends and support ers of a candidate in the speaker’s race. Between the Sharpstown and Lewis eras Laney has also voted consistently against rules and ethics reform in the House, including a 1975 vote against an Elections Commission that would have monitored campaign finance, a 1979 measure that would have required strict financial disclosure by public officials, a 1979 provision that would have limited, the governor’s ability to offer political appointments to large campaign contributors, a 1981 requirement that would have provided greater public access to taped recordings of House committee hearings and a 1989 proposed constitutional amendment that would have increased legisla, tors’ salaries from $7,200 to $23,000 a year. \(It has often been argued that the low salaries in the Legislature discourage working people from running for office and make legislators SO IT SHOULD NOT be surprising that advocates of rules reform and a stronger ethics code in the House are discouraged with the selection of Pete Laney to serve as Speaker after Gib Lewis Departs in January. Naishtat, an Austin progressive who faced no opponent in the last election, said he would like to hear more from Laney on rules reform. “One paragraph isn’t enough,” said Naishtat, who added that he was offered the opportunity to sign on with Laney “a number of times” during the 24 hours before the speaker-elect released his list of 86 names. “I feel like we need a comprehensive rules-reform platform,” Naishtat said. John Hirschi, the Wichita Falls Democrat considered by many to be the force behind the reform caucus, said he faced a difficult decision but decided to sign a Laney pledge card because, among other reasons, it offered him an opportunity to talk straightforwardly to Laney about rules reform. Hirschi said his signing on with Laney was not a quid pro quo and that once Laney had the votes the issue of a secret ballot a reform provision that would make it more difficult for a. speaker to reward his supporters and punish his opponents after taking office became moot. Maxey, also a member of the reform caucus, an informal group of approximately 25, said he spoke with. Laney about reform and was comfortable with the Speaker-elect’s commitment to the issue. “I didn’t sit down with Pete Laney and demand the support of X Y or Z,” Maxey said. “But I am confident he will support the reform that we can get 76 members to vote for.” Maxey said the reform caucus will continue to meet. According to Hirschi, the election of Laney as speaker does not close the door on rules reform this session. The first order of business on the first day of the session will be the election of the speaker, as Secretary of State John Hannah presides over the House. The second order of business will begin when a rules-reform report .pre Continued on page 19 THE TEXAS OBSERVER 5 nowortipmwole.ow nvwfopIP1, 4000…..wwo~-….or.
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