Perry: Session on Congressional Maps Possible

Gov. Rick Perry speaks to the press after leaving a school finance meeting between leaders in the House and Senate May 27, 2011.
Gov. Rick Perry speaks to the press after leaving a school finance meeting between leaders in the House and Senate May 27, 2011.

Gov. Rick Perry opened the door to a special session on congressional redistricting — but only if legislators agree to a map in advance.

Despite enjoying huge supermajorities in the Legislature, Republican leaders have failed to pass legislation redrawing the boundaries for Texans in Congress. If the Legislature doesn't produce a map, it will fall to the federal courts to draw new districts to adjust for huge population gains. Texas grew by 4.3 million people, more than any other state, and is getting four new seats in Congress as a result.

Perry told reporters that he would only call legislators back to Austin on redistricting if lawmakers agree on a map in advance.

"Obviously my druthers is that this bill gets taken care of by the Legislature. I don't think it's the courts' business," Perry said. "When they get to an agreed bill, then I would be wiling to talk about having them back in there for a very quick two- or three-day session to get redistricting done."

Perry said he would not call lawmakers into a session without a deal in advance.

"Why would I call someone in when you don't know whether they're going to be able to perform," Perry said. "To bring people in for 30 days and spend $5 million is irresponsible."

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