Senate Rankings

The 82nd regular session of the Texas Legislature has come to an end. It was perhaps the best legislative session for queer Texans ever with not one, but two anti-bullying bills passed and the HIV Medication Advisory Committee's future protected by statute. Multiple bills and amendments targeting the community were introduced but were all defeated.

We here at Legislative Queery have crunched the numbers and ranked the 31 members of the Texas Senate based on their votes and authored legislation, bills which directly referenced the LGBT community were weighted more heavily than those which were about issues generally important to the LGBT community. You can see the work sheet here. Any ranking system will involve the biases of the people compiling the list. LQ welcomes comments, suggestions, rants and criticisms regarding the rankings

Record votes considered in rankings (Bills of general interest to the LGBT community are worth 30 points each - in cases where multiple votes were taken in the Senate on a single bill the allotted points were divided amongst the votes):
  • HB 1942 - the anti-bullying "super" bill drafted by the House Public Education Committee, the bill made no specific reference to Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity and Expression - a yea vote on the motion to suspend received 15 points, a record vote was not taken on 2nd reading, a yea vote on 3rd reading received 15 points
  • HB 1386 - teen suicide prevention bill - although the bill originally made reference to sexual orientation and gender identity and expression those references were removed by the House Public Health Community.  A yea vote on the motion to suspend received 10 points, a yea vote on 2nd reading received 10 points, a yea vote on 3rd reading received 10 points.
  • HB 2229 - making permanent the Texas HIV Medication Advisory Committee.  A yea vote on the motion to suspend received 10 points, a yea vote on 2nd reading received 10 points, a yea vote on 3rd reading received 10 points.
Bill/Amendment authorship considered in rankings:
  • HB 1386 -  Teen suicide prevention bill, originally included both sexual orientation and gender identity and expression in non-discrimination policy - principle sponsor: 3 points,  joint sponsor: 2 points, co-sponsor: 1 point.
  • HB 1942 - "Super" anti-bullying bill crafted by the House Public Education Committee, no specific mention of sexual orientation or gender identity and expression - principle sponsor: 3 points,  joint sponsor: 2 points, co-sponsor: 1 point.
  • HB 2229 - Makes permanent the Texas HIV Medication Advisory Committee, no specific mention of sexual orientation or gender identity and expression - principle sponsor: 3 points,  joint sponsor: 2 points, co-sponsor: 1 point.
  • SB 42 - Would add cyber-bullying to the definition of bullying - principle author: 3 points,  joint author: 2 points, co-author: 1 point.
  • SB 66 - would close loophole preventing students who have been transferred with-in the last year from being expelled, even for egregious behavior, no specific mention of sexual orientation or gender identity and expression - principle author: 3 points,  joint author: 2 points, co-author: 1 point. 
  • SB 205 - would expand and clarify the anti-bullying requirements of school's student codes of conduct, no specific mention of sexual orientation or gender identity and expression - principle author: 3 points,  joint author: 2 points, co-author: 1 point.
  • SB 242 - Comprehensive anti-bullying legislation that included reporting requirement for discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity or expression - principle author: 4 points,  joint author: 3 points, co-author: 2 points.
  • SB 723 - Would have effectively outlawed opposite-sex marriage for anyone who has changed their legally recognized sex - principle author: -20 points,  joint author: -15 points, co-author: -10 points.
  • SB 736 - As originally filed would require School Health Advisory Councils to make recommendations on anti-bullying curricula to be included in school health classes, no specific mention of sexual orientation or gender identity and expression - principle author: 3 points,  joint author: 2 points, co-author: 1 point.
  • SB 1324 - Would allow people legally recognized as unmarried to enter into gestational agreements with surrogate mothers - principle author: 3 points,  joint author: 2 points, co-author: 1 point.
  • SB 1821- Makes permanent the Texas HIV Medication Advisory Committee - principle author: 3 points,  joint author: 2 points, co-author: 1 point.