Tribpedia: Abortion

Tribpedia

Abortion — a medical procedure to terminate a pregnancy — was first outlawed in Texas during the 19th century. In 1961, Texas passed a law to imprison anyone who helped “procure an abortion” for a pregnant woman. The law excluded abortions necessary to protect the life of the mother, but included a clause to fine any “accomplice” who provided means to obtain ...

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Activists converge at the south steps of the Texas Capitol as the second special session begins July 1, 2013.
Activists converge at the south steps of the Texas Capitol as the second special session begins July 1, 2013.

Amid Protests, Lawmakers Strengthen Their Resolve

As thousands of protesters descended on the state Capitol on Monday in an effort to protect access to abortions in Texas, Republican state leaders launched their second special legislative session with a clear message: They will not stop until they’ve approved far tighter restrictions on the procedure. 

 

Sen. Wendy Davis addresses the Stand with Texas Women Rally crowd at the State Capitol the first day of the 2nd special session.
Sen. Wendy Davis addresses the Stand with Texas Women Rally crowd at the State Capitol the first day of the 2nd special session.

Abortion Rights Activists Descend on Capitol

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Opponents of Republican-backed legislation to dramatically curtail abortion rights in Texas descended on the Capitol by the thousands on Monday, spurred on by bands, celebrities and their new hero — filibustering state Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth. 

Activists gathered near the Senate chamber as SB5, a bill regulating Texas abortions, comes up for a vote on the last day of a special session in Austin.
Activists gathered near the Senate chamber as SB5, a bill regulating Texas abortions, comes up for a vote on the last day of a special session in Austin.

How Public Opinion Fueled Senate's Abortion Fight

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While much attention has been paid to the political conflict on the floor of the Texas Senate last Tuesday, the subtleties of public opinion on abortion in Texas framed the clash in the upper chamber.

Sen. Kirk Watson D-Austin,  announce legislation to modernize the Texas Open Meetings Act on March 7th, 2013.
Sen. Kirk Watson D-Austin, announce legislation to modernize the Texas Open Meetings Act on March 7th, 2013.

Guest Column: Protest Caused by Unruly Bunch in Control

What happened last Tuesday was started by an "unruly bunch" — the people who were controlling the Senate that night, flouting rules, chucking tradition and ignoring common sense to get their way.

Protesters outside the Texas Senate chamber cheer as Sen. Wendy Davis leaves on June 26, 2013.
Protesters outside the Texas Senate chamber cheer as Sen. Wendy Davis leaves on June 26, 2013.

DPS, Abortion Activists Preparing for Renewed Debate

Less than a week after their shouts and screams effectively derailed a vote on a restrictive new abortion law, reproductive rights advocates are already getting organized for the special session. But when proceedings begin again on Monday, state leaders will be better prepared — and are actively working with state security. 

 

Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst ends the 83rd regular session an announces a special session to begin at 6:00PM on May 27, 2013.
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst ends the 83rd regular session an announces a special session to begin at 6:00PM on May 27, 2013.

Dewhurst Aide: Media Conducted Themselves With "Decorum"

After reviewing video from Tuesday's filibuster, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst — who also spoke at a Right to Life conference on Saturday — said he found no evidence that the media incited "unruly" behavior from activists in the Senate gallery. 

Cecile Richards, president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, cheering with activists to disrupt the last minutes of the vote on Senate Bill 5.
Cecile Richards, president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, cheering with activists to disrupt the last minutes of the vote on Senate Bill 5.

How Activists Yelled an Abortion Bill to Death

When efforts by state Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, and other Senate Democrats to run out the clock on an abortion bill fell short, protesters made enough noise to grind the Senate chamber to a halt. But the unusual display of civil disobedience was not planned by the groups that had rallied thousands to the Capitol that day.

A woman in the Senate gallery pushes back against a police officer and is later arrested during the last hour of the Senate session on June 25, 2013.
A woman in the Senate gallery pushes back against a police officer and is later arrested during the last hour of the Senate session on June 25, 2013.

Arrestee Talks About Capitol Officers During Filibuster

One of the three people who were arrested in the wake of Tuesday night's Senate abortion debate said DPS officers did not overstep their bounds.

 

Senator Wendy Davis goes to Haranbee Festival in Fort Worth to encourage voters, after sending out her volunteers for Walk for Wendy, on October 6, 2012.
Senator Wendy Davis goes to Haranbee Festival in Fort Worth to encourage voters, after sending out her volunteers for Walk for Wendy, on October 6, 2012.

Despite National Spotlight, Davis Faces Fight in Texas

State Sen. Wendy Davis came off the Senate floor early Wednesday morning as the national Democratic Party's newest star. But what effect the Fort Worth Democrat's 11-hour filibuster to stop abortion legislation will have on her political prospects in her home state is an open question.

Protesters outside the Texas Senate chamber cheer as Sen. Wendy Davis leaves on June 26, 2013.
Protesters outside the Texas Senate chamber cheer as Sen. Wendy Davis leaves on June 26, 2013.

Led by Davis, Democrats Defeat Abortion Legislation

The nation watched on Tuesday — and into Wednesday — as Democratic Sen. Wendy Davis and hundreds of impassioned reproductive rights advocates stalled proceedings and ultimately defeated controversial abortion legislation in a storm of screams and shouts as the clock struck midnight.

 

Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, debates Sen. Bob Deuell, R-Greenville, about halfway through a filibuster of SB 5 on June 25, 2013.
Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, debates Sen. Bob Deuell, R-Greenville, about halfway through a filibuster of SB 5 on June 25, 2013.

Liveblog: Abortion Bill Fails Amid Midnight Chaos After Filibuster

Texas senators are trying to get to the bottom of whether Republicans successfully pushed through a vote on Senate Bill 5, the omnibus abortion restriction bill, ahead of their midnight deadline.

 

Abortion, Protests, Transportation as Session Nears End

UPDATED: The Senate is standing at ease as supporters of Senate Bill 5 work to get enough lawmakers in the room to suspend the rules and bring the abortion regulation legislation up. State Sen. Eddie Lucio, D-Brownsville, the lone Democratic senator supporting the measure, says he will not vote until Sen. Leticia Van de Putte, D-San Antonio, is back from her deceased father's visitation. 

Video: The Overnight Abortion Debate

With a packed gallery, and amid fierce debate, the Texas House took up Senate Bill 5 on Sunday — and early Monday. Authored by state Sen. Glenn Hegar, R-Katy, and sponsored by state Rep. Jodie Laubenberg, R-Parker, the bill would ban abortion after 20 weeks of gestation and impose stricter requirements on doctors and facilities that perform the procedure. Democrats filed nearly 40 amendments; provisions they took their time debating.

House Committee Quietly Approves Anti-Abortion Bills

After abruptly ending hours of public testimony that went into the wee hours of Friday morning, the House State Affairs committee reconvened on Friday and quietly approved House Bill 60, its companion, Senate Bill 5 — omnibus abortion restriction legislation — and a standlone measure to ban abortion at 20 weeks gestation, House Bill 16.

Preparations for Planned Parenthood rally at Texas Capitol on March 7th, 2013
Preparations for Planned Parenthood rally at Texas Capitol on March 7th, 2013

Anti-Abortion Bills Back on the Table

UPDATED: The House State Affairs Committee did not vote on an omnibus abortion bill after more than nine hours of testimony. Opponents of the measure say the abrupt end to the hearing may open the door to killing it.