What Texans Really Think About New Abortion Restrictions | GOP Says Perry Fueling Republican War On Women Talk
1. Texas Gov. Rick Perry has called a second special session of the state legislature to pass a highly-restrictive abortion bill defeated last week when Texas Democrat Wendy Davis led a filibuster against the bill. Davis’ act of defiance in trying to defeat the bill comes at a time when she is almost forced to fun for statewide public office in 2014.
Republicans tried to gerrymander her Ft. Worth seat into Republican hands in 2012, but the action ended up in federal court, after the federal government objected to the obvious attempts to reconfigure districts to assure Republican wins.
With this week’s Supreme Court ruling that gutted the Voting Rights Act, Republicans will be gunning for Davis’ seat with extra fervor. Read on.
2. Two new June 2013 polls of Texans share the latest thinking on abortion rights in the state. In the first UT/TT poll (University of Texas & Texas Tribune) , only 16% agree with legislation that makes no exemption for rape or incest, as is the case in the Texas abortion bill. 49% of Texans polled support abortion where need is clearly established and as a matter of personal choice. 46% support abortion only in cases of rape, incest or danger to women’s life — or not at all. 5% don’t know.
In a second poll (see column 3), only 38% of Texans said that abortion laws should be stricter.
3. 47% of Texans polled last week (larger) on proposed abortion legislation believe the current Texas law should remain as is or become less strict, compared to the 38% that want tougher laws.
Of great concern is the medically-false, fetal pain at 20 weeks of development argument being perpetuated by pro-life forces in Texas. Understandably, even pro-choice people are concerned about exactly when a fetus feels pain. We will report on the first reputable group of doctors who accept the 20-week, fetal-pain argument. Brain development suggests this can’t be possible at 20 weeks, and this is the current position of the medical establishment.
4. The Texas Tribune reports that House Speaker Joe Straus, one of the most powerful Republicans in Texas, said that Gov. Rock Perry’s controversial remarks about Democratic Sen. Wendy Davis were inappropriate and damaging to the GOP brand.
Perry attacked Davis, a teenage mother who began life in a trailer park as the daughter on an unwed mother. Davis ended up at the Harvard Law School and the Texas state legislature.
Perry said: “It’s just unfortunate that she hasn’t learned from her own example: that every life must be given a chance to realize its full potential and that every life matters.”
Davis appeared on MSNBC earlier Friday morning to say Perry’s comment “demeans the office that he holds.”
5. Ohio Republicans staged an ‘end-run’ around Planned Parenthood and pro-choice voters in the state, burying new abortion restrictions in the state budget. This “no debate, let’s just do it and abandon the legislative process approach to the Republican War on Women is shaking up American women in a major way.
The proposed budget would defund Planned Parenthood, strip funding from rape crisis centers that give their clients information about abortion, force some abortion clinics to close, and require doctors to give women information about the fetal heartbeat before proceeding with an abortion. Only a line-item veto can keep the changes from becoming law.