The Texas Legislature’s unprecedented three special sessions this summer are likely to leave the taxpayers of the Lone Star State footing a $2.4 million bill. But according to Republican state Rep. Giovanni Capriglione, there’s a simple option for covering part that: Make Democratic state Sen. Wendy Davis pay for one of the sessions.
“I think we need to remember why we are having this extra special session,” Capriglione told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram on Tuesday. “One state senator, in an effort to capture national attention, forced this special session.”
In June, Davis was catapulted into the national spotlight after launching a 10-hour filibuster against a Texas Senate bill containing sweeping abortion restrictions. While the bill eventually was passed during a second special session in July, Gov. Rick Perry recently called for another session to tackle transportation funding.
“I firmly believe that Sen. Wendy Davis should reimburse the taxpayers for the entire cost of the second special session,” Capriglione said. “I am sure that she has raised enough money at her Washington, D.C., fundraiser to cover the cost.”
According to the Star-Telegram, a special session, which can last up to 30 days, costs the state about $800,000 after representatives and senators have received their living expenses and travel allowance. After three special sessions, that adds up to $2.4 million.
Davis, who dismissed the criticisms, said it’s the state’s GOP leadership that’s to blame.
“It’s unfortunate that the leadership in power squandered taxpayer dollars pursuing partisan politics before Texas priorities and forced an unnecessary special session,” Davis said.