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The Ron and Joanna Clark Collection - Texas 77th Legislature, HB2669 (2000)

Joanna Clark

Sound | 2000

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  •  State Representative Harold V. Dutton of District 142 introduces House Bill 2639 
  •  Representative Warren Chisum, chair of the Environmental Regulations Committee, argues against the bill 
  •  Representative David Swinford, chair of the Agriculture and Livestock Committee 
  •  Representative Rick Hardcastle of District 28 
  •  Representative Pat Haggerty, chair of the Corrections Committee, speaks for the bill 
  •  Representative Ken Yarbrough of District 138 
  •  Representative Rick Noriega of District 145 
  •  Representative Jerry Madden of District 67 
  •  Representative Joe Nixon of District 133 
  •  Representative Dianne Delisi of District 55 
  •  Jerry Madden 
  •  Representative David Counts, chair of the Natural Resources Committee 
  •  Division vote 
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This VHS tape captures scenes from the Texas 77th Legislature in the year 2001. The segment focuses on the consideration of House Bill 2639, introduced by State Representative Harold V. Dutton of Harris County. The bill relates to the inclusion of an incarcerated person in the population data used for redistricting, according to the person’s last residence before incarceration. HB 2639 leads to a debate between Dutton and Republican Warren Chisum, chair of the Environmental Regulation Committee. Chisum argues that a prison and its corresponding district counts as an inmate’s residence. However, Dutton maintains that a prison sentence is temporary. He argues that most inmates return to their original place of residence one their sentence expires. Although this bill is specific to redistricting, the various arguments highlight important issues and concerns regarding the prison system today. The clip not only illustrates the legislative process, but also provides a glimpse into the culture of Texas politics, where humor, sarcasm, and gravity combine into one unique concoction.
Ronald “Ron” Clark was born on January 5, 1953, in Caripito, Venezuela. He attended the University of Connecticut before joining the US Army in 1974, serving two years. Clark then moved to Texas to pursue a law degree. After graduating from the University of Texas School of Law in 1979, he became an assistant city attorney in the City Attorney’s Office of Abilene. Three years later, Clark went into private practice and settled in Sherman. 
Clark began a political career in 1996 with a campaign for State Representative from the 62nd District. He won, eventually serving three terms in the Texas House of Representatives. Clark was reelected for a fourth term, but was never sworn in. In January 2002, President George W. Bush nominated him for a seat on the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas. The United States Senate confirmed his lifetime appointment in October 2002. Clark became chief judge of the court in January 2015. 
Ron Clark
Clark, Ron
Joanna Clark
Clark, Joanna
Cooke County
Grayson County
State Representative
State Representative Ron Clark
Texas House of Representatives
Legislature of the State of Texas
state representative
state legislator
Texas Legislature
local government
state government
district court
State Representative Ron Clark
District 62
Grayson County
Cooke County
elected state officials
Republican Party
Legislature 77th last
Harold V. Dutton Jr.
Dutton, Harold V. Jr.
Second Reading
Rule 166 A
motion for summary judgment
motion to table
record vote
division vote
HB 2639
Warren Chisum
Chisum, Warren
Representative Warren Chisum
Representative Chisum
David Swinford
Swinford, David
Representative David Swinford
Representative Swinford
Rick Hardcastle
Hardcastle, Rick
Representative Rick Hardcastle
Representative Hardcastle
Pat Haggerty
Haggerty, Pat
Representative Pat Haggerty
Representative Haggerty
Ken Yarbrough
Yarbrough, Ken
Representative Ken Yarbrough
Representative Yarbrough
Rick Noreiga
Noriega, Rick
Representative Rick Noriega
Representative Noriega
Jerry Madden
Madden, Jerry
Representative Jerry Madden
Representative Madden
Joe Nixon
Nixon, Joe
Representative Joe Nixon
Representative Nixon
Dianne Delisi
Delisi, Dianne
Representative Diane Delisi
Representative Delisi
David Counts
Counts, David
Representative David Counts
Representative Counts
Texas State Capitol Building
State Capitol Building
Texas State Capitol
state capitol
public access television