State Rep. Leo Berman of Tyler has already gained notoriety for introducing a birther bill in the legislature, but he's not done yet.
Now he's sponsoring a rally on the capitol steps that is calling for Texas to secede from the United States.
The announcement of the rally begins:
South Sudan. Egypt. Could Texas be next?
Following the recent popular vote which led to the peaceful, successful secession of South Sudan and the massive popular protests which led to a relatively-peaceful change of government in Egypt, leaders of the movement pushing for Texas independence believe their time has come.
State Rep. Leo Berman (R-Tyler) will serve as legislative sponsor for a Texas Independence Rally on the south steps of the state capitol in Austin March 5 as part of the 175th anniversary of Texas independence.
We've got a call in to Berman, but Dave Mundy, the spokesman for the Texas Nationalist Movement, tells Hair Balls that the rep's sponsorship doesn't necessarily mean he's calling for the state to leave the union.
"When the legislature is in session, in order to have any type of rally on the steps of the capitol there has to be a legislative sponsor, and in this case Representative Berman has generously consented to help us out on that," he says.
So does that mean's he's endorsing the message?
"I don't know if he's endorsing -- you'll probably have to ask him directly," he says. "I think in the past he has taken a pretty strong stance in favor of state sovereignty, but I don't know that he's gone over to the independence side just yet...It's kind of hard to get a legislator to come all the way over to that side without having 17,000 people in front of them screaming."
Well, yeah, what with the whole "being traitors and hating America" part of it.
TNM president Daniel Miller is clear:
The southern part of Sudan seceded from its parent nation, and the United States supported that peaceful transition and self-determination of the people. Now we've seen Egypt begin to transition toward a more democratic form of government, free of tyranny, with the blessing of the U.S. It is time for the people of Texas to claim the nationhood that our unique culture demands. It is time for the people of Texas to have their own say in self-determination.
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Update: We've heard from Berman, who wants to make it clear he's not supporting Texas seceding from the U.S., even though he's sponsoring the rally.
"They have to have a legislative sponsor, and I'm willing to do that for just about anyone in order to let them be heard," he said. "But I very strongly do not support secession."
He says he has "no qualms" about supporting a secession rally. Is there any group out there whose message is so far out, so radical and dangerous that he would refuse to be a legislative sponsor for them?
"I"m very, very, very strongly pro-life," he says. "So I would not support an abortion-type rally."