Texas senator vows 13-hour filibuster to kill 20-week limit on abortion

Despite the legislation having no chance of getting past the Senate or the president’s desk, the House last week passed the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. Inspired by the Kermit Gosnell trial, the bill would restrict most abortions past 20 weeks. Individual states have taken up the cause, and abortion advocates have convened on the Texas state senate today to block similar legislation from reaching Gov. Rick Perry’s desk before the special legislative session ends today.

The Texas Tribune has a concise review of the proposed legislation, most of which addresses the failures that contributed to Philadelphia abortionist Gosnell’s conviction on a charge of involuntary manslaughter in the death of a patient:

House Bill 60 and Senate Bill 5 authored by state Rep. Jodie Laubenberg, R-Parker, and state Sen. Glenn Hegar, R-Katy, respectively, would ban abortion at 20-weeks gestation, require physicians that perform the procedure to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital, require abortions to be performed in ambulatory surgical centers and require doctors administering abortion-inducing drugs to do so in person.

While abortion opponents argue the bills would improve women’s safety, reproductive rights advocates argue the bills would close 37 of the state’s 42 facilities that perform abortions and set up unnecessary obstacles for women seeking the procedure, effectively cutting off legal access to abortion in the state and endangering women’s health.

Leading the charge against S.B. 5 is Texas state Sen. Wendy Davis, who has promised to speak for 13 hours to prevent the bill from moving to a vote before the legislative session expires. Davis found support in Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards, who watched from the gallery, and from tweeters who made #StandWithWendy into a trending topic.

http://twitter.com/#!/Nate_Norris/status/349608033434877952

Comedian, “Daily Show” co-creator and A Is For… co-founder Lizz Winstead urged followers to ship wire coat hangers to the Texas State Capitol.

Rep. Nancy Pelosi also sent her support from afar, as did “Girls” writer and star Lena Dunham.

http://twitter.com/#!/KirstieMcCarty/status/349666520902823936

Not everyone pushing #StandWithWendy and #SB5 up the list of trending topics was in support of the filibuster, though.

http://twitter.com/#!/SooperMexican/status/349662854997221376

Read more: http://twitchy.com/2013/06/25/texas-state-sen-wendy-davis-vows-13-hour-filibuster-to-kill-20-week-limit-on-abortion/

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