Texas Gov. Rick Perry will be signing House Bill 2 into law at the state capitol Thursday morning, as pro-abortion protests continue throughout the state. According to Perry, the legislation will not only protect the unborn, but it will also advance the health and safety of women in Texas.
The legislation will ban abortion in the Lone Star state after 20 weeks gestation, and require abortion facilities to meet the same safety standards as ambulatory surgical centers. The bill would also require abortionists to have admitting privileges at a local hospital located within 30 miles of the abortion clinic, and to administer RU-486 in person.
Following 10 hours of debate that started after 2:30 p.m. on Friday, HB 2 passed the Senate by a vote of 19-11 at midnight on Saturday.
Emily Horne, a legislative associate for Texas Right to Life, told The Christian Post on Wednesday that the pro-life organizations is "thrilled about the passage of HB 2," and noted that for women who do elect to have an abortion in Texas, they will be in a safer environment; but added that she hopes the passage of the legislation will encourage women to choose life for their unborn children.
Horne told CP that TRL isn't surprised by the ongoing protests against the legislation from pro-abortion groups, such as Planned Parenthood and NARAL, which claim that the bill will have a negative impact on women's health, and mentioned that "Planned Parenthood is responsible for the death of a woman in Chicago," who died at the abortion clinic following a second-trimester abortion. According to Horne, Planned Parenthood and NARAL shouldn't be opposed to requiring abortion clinics to meet basic health and safety standards, such as widening hallways and doorways.
Perry, who in a statement shared with CP, said that he's proud of the Texas legislature for "protecting women's health [and] defending our smallest and most vulnerable Texans and future Texans," told CNN's Candy Crowley on "State of the Union" on Sunday that a majority of Americans are opposed to late-term abortion.
"Most people, I think, in this country – and in Texas certainly – believe that six months is too late to be deciding whether or not these babies should be aborted or not, and we put the limit at five months in this bill," Perry said.
Following the Senate's vote and passage of the bill, Carol Tobias, president of the National Right to Life Committee, commended Texas for being the "tenth state to enact effective protection for pain-capable unborn children." She also noted that "in a nationwide poll of 1,003 registered voters in March, The Polling Company found that 64 percent said they would support a law such as the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act prohibiting abortion after 20 weeks, unless the life of the mother is in danger."
State troopers receive criticism from pro-abortion advocates for inspecting visitors' bags
On Tuesday Steven McCraw, director of the Texas Department of Public Safety, confirmed that troopers had found jars of urine and feces inside the purses and bags of visitors who were lined up to enter the senate gallery last Friday. Other items people were asked to discard include paint, confetti, glitter, handheld air horns, a bag full of tomatoes and tampons.
"During these inspections, DPS officers have thus far discovered one jar suspected to contain urine, 18 jars suspected to contain feces, and three bottles suspected to contain paint. All of these items – as well as significant quantities of feminine hygiene products, glitter and confetti possessed by individuals – were required to be discarded; otherwise those individuals were denied entry into the gallery," according to a statement released by the Texas DPS.
After learning about "tampon-gate," Sen. Kirk Watson (D-Austin), spoke to Texas DPS who were in charge of inspecting women's bags, and soon thereafter women who were lined up to enter the senate gallery were allowed to keep their personal care items.
Pro-abortion advocate Shelby Alexander told KTBC-TV that actions taken by DPS were "symoblic" of HB 2, and women "losing the right to care for their own bodies."
Democratic Sen. Wendy Davis schedules political fundraiser in Washington, D.C.
Texas Sen. Wendy Davis (D-Ft. Worth), who garnered national attention following a 10-hour filibuster that delayed abortion legislation in the Senate and a heavily promoted Planned Parenthood bus tour with Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, will be in Washington, D.C. on July 25 to hold two political fundraisers.