Texas Scorecard reports that House Speaker Dennis Bonnen may be losing control over Republican House members.
A group of 30 Republican House members requested a special caucus meeting to address certain changes in their leadership structure.
After an ongoing investigation by the Texas Rangers Public Integrity Unit, State Representative Dustin Burrows, who was the subject of the investigation, ended up resigning as chair of the House Republican Caucus.
This investigation was brought about after allegations of a backroom deal that Bonnen tried to make with Empower Texas CEO Michael Quinn Sullivan. BLP reported that Burrows was present at this meeting.
Following Burrows’ resignation, State Representative Stephanie Klick, the former vice chair of the caucus, took over Burrow’s spot, thus leaving a vacant post.
Previously, email meetings were used to fill this vacancy. In contrast, now lawmakers are demanding a physical meeting to hold an election for the new vice chair.
According to Capitol insiders, this move is a big setback for Speaker Bonnen and his leadership cabal, due to it giving them an opportunity for members to challenge the speaker over his backroom schemes.
These same sources indicate that Bonnen and his allies have been working to roadblock this meeting. Currently, Texas House Republican Caucus bylaws stipulates that a meeting must be held by September 15. However, the letter requests that a meeting be held in Austin on the week of September 8 “in order to ensure the maximum participation by our Caucus members.”
By adding their signatures to this letter, lawmakers are standing in opposition to the House Speaker. And they’re no longer alone.
According to the state capitol source, the letter’s author stopped collecting signatures at 30 members, but more members continued to sign on.
The following elected officials signed on to this letter:
Gary Van Deaver
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