Vol. 1, Issue 15, August 26, 2003
Education for the Otiose
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Texas Democrats Head to International Space Station

In an apparent effort to forestall their return to the state, eleven Texas Senate Democrats have secretly purchased passage aboard a Russian Cosmos 3M rocket and have departed for the International Space Station.

"The state of Texas was trying everything it could to get its hands on us," said Senator Royce West, one of the eleven. "We had thought that staying in New Mexico would keep us safe, but the Texas state troopers called in the FBI and began seriously laying down cash among members of the New Mexico state police. We knew it was only a matter of time before we were hauled back."

The eleven Democrats were seeking to prevent a vote on redistricting intended to break up the 17-15 Democratic majority currently held in the state's congressional delegation. The Democrats have said the current map should not be changed, and that proposals before the GOP-dominated legislature this year would have hurt minority representation.

Republicans, led by U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, have said recent voting trends show Texas should have more Republicans representing the state in Washington.

By going to New Mexico, the Senate Democrats avoided the possibility of being arrested by the Senate sergeant-at-arms and forced back to the Capitol. However, with New Mexico becoming increasingly unsafe, the Space Station was chosen as the best alternative.

"I am deeply disappointed in these so-called Texans," said President Bush in a press conference. "It's almost enough to make me say I'm ashamed to be from Texas."

Because the United States shuttle program is grounded pending the conclusion of the Columbia investigation, there is no easy way for Texas to get the Democrats back now. However, they are not giving up hope despite this latest setback.

"Frankly, I'm tempted to say we should shoot the thing down," said De Lay. "Houston's got plenty of other spaceworthy rockets. Send something up, some Texas Rangers, something. This is an outrage. Plus, if they think America is sending extra food up there, they're mistaken."

Space Station Commander Yuri Malenchenko admitted that the ISS has become somewhat crowded, but is glad for the extra help. "Cleaning up is quite a chore," he said in a televised interview this morning. "And now, with twelve people to boss around instead of one, I feel like a real commander."


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