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Puppy Mill Bill Bumped Off Fast Track

For the second time, Rep. Senfronia Thompson's contentious "puppy mill" bill has been bumped from the fast track. It will now be subject to debate on the general House calendar.

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Rep. Senfronia Thompson, D-Houston, once more introduced a bill today on the House's fast-tracked "local and consent" calendar that would add new regulations for anyone who owns 11 or more unspayed female dogs or cats. And once more, Rep. David Simpson, R-Longview, succeeded in keeping it from a vote. The bill will now be moved to the General House Calendar, where it will be up for debate before a vote. 

Simpson, a freshman, first used a rules technicality to attempt to knock the bill off the Local and Consent calendar, which is set by a committee Thompson chairs. He was overruled, but Thompson, the longest serving African-American in the Legislature, took issue with Simpson anyway, berating him for questioning the “integrity” of the committee. 

“I don’t mind being attacked personally. I don’t mind the legislation that I’m carrying being attacked,” Thompson said. "... Every bill on the calendar today and before now has met the criteria, the matrix, that has been established by the rules of the House."

Still, Simpson continued to object to the bill, and said he was determined to talk about it on the floor for 10 minutes, which, by House rules, means the bill must be taken off the Local and Consent Calendar. 

Thompson said she's not giving up. 

“If this bill doesn’t make it today, you know I’ll be back,” Thompson said. 

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