A proposed resolution asking for the resignation of State Rep. Dawnna Dukes

A resolution is making rounds within the "Travis County Democratic Party," its urging State Representative, Dawnna Dukes to resign. But, not everyone is on board with that idea.

Daniel Segura-Kelly drafted a resolution asking for the resignation of State Representative Dawnna Dukes.

WHEREAS:The Travis County Democratic Party thanks Representative Dawnna Dukes for her
many years of service on behalf of District 46 as a fierce advocate for progressive
values; and  

WHEREAS:Representative Dukes announced in September 2016 that she intended to resign effective Tuesday, January 10th, 2017, “in light of my ongoing health issues and concerns,” and finding she, “can no longer provide the active, effective leadership that is needed to continue my sworn duties.”; and

Travis County Democrats believe that an elected public official’s promise to the public
should be seen as sacred and that the public can trust; and

The issues and concerns of the people of District 46 have not enjoyed a focus of time
and energy from Representative Dawnna Dukes during the 85th Texas Legislative
Session, as promised by the representative shortly after withdrawing a commitment to

The Travis County Democratic Party respectfully requests that
Representative Dawnna Dukes immediately resign her Texas House seat so that
constituents of Texas House District 46 may elect a new representative who can
effectively serve the district.

The undersigned, being all duly elected or appointed Precinct Chairs in
House District 46 and elected party officials of the Travis County Democratic Party,
endorse and certify a majority support for this resolution. Also, the undersigned,
request that the Travis County Democratic Party Executive Committee consider and
adopt this resolution to demonstrate clearly that the TCDP is committed to ensuring
that constituents of House District 46 have equitable and effective leadership in the
Texas House of Representatives.

However, Party Chair Vincent Harding denied the request to add it to the agenda and said he hadn't had a chance to review it.

Following the request Chair Vincent Harding issued the following statement regarding  a proposed resolution calling for the resignation of Rep. Dawnna Dukes. 

On Wednesday May 31, the Travis County Democratic Party held a County Executive Committee meeting. A group of precinct chairs attempted to amend the agenda during the meeting to present a resolution asking for the resignation of Rep. Dawnna Dukes, against the wishes of the Chair. Chair Harding released the following statement:

“There have been a number of questions regarding a potential resolution from the Travis County Democratic Party’s (TCDP) County Executive Committee (CEC) calling on Representative Dawnna Dukes to resign. I hope to clear up any confusion.

On Sunday May 21, at 9:27pm, I received a written request, which I think is the first and only written request, to put an item on the agenda regarding a resolution calling on Rep. Dukes to resign. The request did not include a copy of the proposed resolution and it asked for a response by Monday May 22 at 8:00am, a time that I was traveling, and I denied the request.

At the CEC meeting on Wednesday May 31, a parliamentarian was scheduled to attend but was unable to at the last minute, therefore I ran the meeting based on precedent set at previous meetings. In recent years, Precinct Chairs have not overruled the Party Chair as it relates to items on the agenda. Thus, I followed the precedent and expected to be treated as every other Party Chair before me.

I am seeking legal counsel into the precise rules for future meetings on an issue that has not occurred at a CEC meeting in recent years. If in fact I misunderstood the rules, then I apologize. Once the precise rules are confirmed, I will follow them.

Amending an agenda during a meeting allows for an unposted resolution to not only be discussed, but possibly passed by the Party without notice or input from the community. This potential resolution should not be rushed through, and the community should be made aware of such a proposal. I will continue to urge the Party to not have the TCDP tip the scales in an election that is less than 10 months away.

If Precinct Chairs are unsatisfied with their local elected official, then individual Precinct Chairs should work to elect a candidate they align with in the next election, and not have the Party weigh in on a Primary Election. After all, the voters of House District 46 have the final say on this matter.

It would be unprecedented for the Party to call for the resignation when the Party did not and has not called on other Travis County elected officials to resign who have had concerns.

But even if the Party does pass a resolution calling on Rep. Dukes to resign, it has no legal effect. Ultimately, the voters of House District 46 will determine their Representative for the next two-year term, as they should, and no one else. They deserve the right to decide who will represent their interests.

It is unfortunate Precinct Chairs within the TCDP secretly recorded tapes. This is surprising given the Party’s County Executive Committee Meetings are open to the public and specific notice rules are followed to ensure transparency.

I want to thank everyone who has reached out in support and to others who have provided their input. We will not always agree, but we should always respect each other. I will continue to uphold my only campaign promise, which is to do what I believe is right.”