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Entries in abortion (1)


Standing Strong for Reproductive Rights

By Sheryl Wright

For those of us who believe in a woman’s right to obtain a safe and legal abortion, the push by state legislatures throughout the country to restrict women’s reproductive rights is disturbing to say the least. But in a welcome turn of events last night, those legislative efforts hit a wall in the great state of Texas. AP PhotoAt close to midnight (CMT), Texas state Senator Wendy Davis (D) ended an 11-hour filibuster which made it possible to halt the Republicans attempt to pass Texas Senate Bill 5 (SB5)—legislation that would ban abortions after 20 weeks and close 37 of the 42 clinics in the state.

40 years have passed since Roe v. Wade, the landmark Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion in the U.S. The abortion debate started many years before the Court’s ruling, and what has happened since 1973 shows that pro-life advocates were not deterred. Through the work of pro-life groups and their legislative allies, access to abortions hangs in the balance in Mississippi, Arkansas, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming—states with only one remaining facility that provides abortion services. Unable to make abortions illegal, the anti-reproductive rights folks are more than happy to create abortion-free state[s] by making it impossible for providers to operate within their states—despite having the lowest abortion rate in the country and only one clinic, legislators and activists in Mississippi continue to push for additional anti-choice measures.

Like those in Mississippi, it’s unlikely that Texas Republicans have given up on their attempt to pass “the most restrictive abortion law the state has ever seen, and one of the most restrictive in the country.” After acknowledging defeat, Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst (R) said, “It’s been fun. See you soon.” In the meantime as Texas Republicans plan their comeback, those who stand on the side of a woman’s right to obtain a safe and legal abortion have reason to be encouraged for the battles ahead.

Thank you to Senator Davis and to all of the Texans who showed up and spoke out in support of women’s reproductive rights! It was an awesome example of the power of the people’s voices.