Does 'Remember the Alamo' sound familiar?

Sunday, May 18, 2003

When the going gets tough, where do the tough go? Well, Democratic state representatives, accustomed to bullying their Republican colleagues at the statehouse in Austin forever and a day, don't like the new Republican majority. So a bunch of the Democrats left town. Make that left the state.

About 50 House Democrats holed up in a motel in Ardmore, Okla., which is a nice enough town but no vacation spa.

Why Oklahoma? Because if the Democrats stayed in Texas, they could be hunted down by Texas Rangers and hauled back to Austin so the House could convene and conduct business.

Why were they running away? Because House Republicans are pushing a redistricting plan that Democrats believe would give the GOP a lock on 20 (it already has 15) of Texas' 32 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives.

It was only a few years ago that the chances of a Republican getting elected to anything in Texas were about as slim as a Republican in Missouri's Bootheel. But the political world has changed a great deal in recent years. There are Republican officeholders everywhere in Texas now -- and in the Bootheel.

So some of the House Democrats in Texas decided to pull their little stunt by going off to Ardmore.

Davy Crockett and Sam Houston must be twirling in their graves. Imagine the stories we'd be telling today if, faced with a final Mexican assault, the defenders of the Alamo had chosen to hightail it out of San Antonio? Of course, they couldn't have gone to Ardmore. It wasn't there yet.

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