The Democrats’ power in the State Capitol is ironclad.
And it was wielded in startling fashion last week when a Republican state senator defied a demand to stop speaking and was physically removed from the Senate floor by law enforcement.
The senator, Janet Nguyen, had stood up to criticize Tom Hayden, the 1960s radical, over his opposition to the Vietnam War. Days earlier, Mr. Hayden had been honored in the Capitol for his service in the Legislature. He died in October.
But as Ms. Nguyen, who fled Communist Vietnam as a child, was speaking, the presiding senator declared her out of order. When she refused to sit, he summoned the sergeant-at-arms.