WASHINGTON — Republicans in the Texas legislature just passed one of the country’s strictest abortion laws. The legislation will effectively ban abortion in the state of Texas after six weeks, before many people know they’re pregnant, and would allow any person in the state of Texas to sue a medical provider and anyone involved in helping someone obtain an abortion. The law would not allow for exceptions in cases of rape or incest, making it among the cruelest in the nation.
Republicans passed this bill despite fierce opposition from faith leaders and medical professionals throughout the state.
“This bill is a horrific attack on reproductive freedoms,” said Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee President Jessica Post. “Republican lawmakers are grossly interfering in the personal decisions of Texans and giving rapists veto power over their victim’s choice to have an abortion. Even worse, if this bill is signed into law any person would be allowed to sue anyone remotely involved in helping someone obtain an abortion. The clear goal of this bill is to eradicate reproductive care in the state of Texas. It’s reckless, it’s cruel, and it will have horrific consequences for the state.”
While GOP legislatures across the country are passing restrictive abortion bans, this bill is among the worst as it allows anyone to sue anyone who aids or abets an abortion. Not only does that provision put health care professionals at risk for doing their jobs and likely opens them up to liability for non-abortion care, but it would also subject friends or family members who give someone a ride to an abortion clinic to lawsuits. Because the bill does not have exceptions for rape or incest, a rapist would be able to sue his victim’s doctor for providing an abortion.