Perry blames abortion rights activists for 'absolute anarchy'
July 1st, 2013
12:13 PM ET
1 year ago

Perry blames abortion rights activists for 'absolute anarchy'

(CNN) – Texas Gov. Rick Perry said he expects the state legislature to finish their work as early as next week in a special session held in part to vote on restrictive abortion legislation.

But the Republican governor cautioned that there won't be the same "turmoil" and "mob rule" from protesters in the public gallery as there was last week.

Though another large crowd is expected to descend upon Austin Monday, "the lieutenant governor and the speaker both are not going to allow that to occur in their chambers," Perry said in an interview with KFYO, a radio station based in Lubbock, Texas.

Supporters of state Sen. Wendy Davis piled into the state capitol last week as the Democrat from Ft. Worth attempted a 13-hour filibuster to stop a bill that would ban most abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy and tighten standards on abortion clinics and the doctors who work at them. Critics say the legislation would shut most of the abortion clinics in Texas.

Texas abortion battle continues, heads into second special session

When the chairman ruled she had gone off topic around her 10th hour, the Senate attempted to cut her off and officially end the debate. The chamber then entered a lengthy debate about parliamentary rules, and shortly before midnight, supporters of Davis stalled by shouting and chanting in the public gallery. Others who were gathered in the rotunda joined in-all with the goal of silencing the Senate to prevent a vote on the bill.

Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst announced the bill was dead at 3 a.m., faulting the protesters for disrupting the process.

View the state House version of the bill

Perry said Monday that a group of people have never taken over the voting process at the capitol in the state's history. Asked how long he expects the Senate to stay in session, Perry said it depends: "The question is are you going to let a small group of people take over the process, an unruly mob, to keep from democracy from occurring."

But, he added, he thinks lawmakers "can get in and get out of here by next Monday or next Wednesday."

In a separate interview with WBAP, a station that serves the Dallas-Ft. Worth metroplex, Perry said the "absolute anarchy that we saw in the last 15 minutes in the Senate chamber (was) not appropriate or normal."

Wendy Davis: Perry has ‘demeaned’ the office he holds

He called on the anti-abortion community to have the same intensity as their opponents in the days ahead but to conduct themselves with "decency, civility and decorum."

"Regardless of whether there is a vocal opposition...Texans and their views will prevail," he said.

Perry fiercely defended the bill in the radio interviews, saying the legislation does more for women who are having an abortion by requiring higher medical standards to be put in place.

Davis, meanwhile, quickly became a national figure following her filibuster. Perry offered some personal criticism of the state senator last week, sparking a public dispute between the two that launched speculation over whether Texas may see a Perry-Davis showdown in next year's gubernatorial election.

Wendy Davis: From teen mom to Harvard Law to famous filibuster

The state senator told NBC News she hasn't "ruled out" the idea of running for governor but is focused on preventing the abortion bill from passing in the special session. In her slew of recent media interviews, Davis has argued that Perry is simply trying to boost his political aspirations by being a big voice in the abortion battle.

Asked about Davis on Monday, Perry, who hasn't announced whether he'll run in 2014, told KFYO the issue is about a debate over life and women's health, not "someone's political future."

Texas filibuster on abortion bill rivets online

– CNN's Miguel Marquez contributed to this report.


Filed under: Abortion • Rick Perry • Texas
soundoff (640 Responses)
  1. saidit

    It is about the right to your own body and not about the right to be a parent. Many women have good reasons why they don't want to be or can't be an incubator regardless of whether or not they think the fetus is human enough. If fetus's could live outside of the human body or transferred to another -say the father for instance, there wouldn't be an issue. Why don't we work on solving that problem?

    July 1, 2013 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  2. Maximum bob

    Rick Perry is now officially un-electable for President. The GOP is finished if this is their platform.

    July 1, 2013 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  3. Gene2

    Rick Perry, you are a stain on the office that our beloved Ann Richards once held. Thirteen years of your Texas Taliban-style "leadership" are more than enough. I hope you get sent packing so fast you won't have time to utter your most famous proclamation, "Oops."

    July 1, 2013 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  4. EX-REPUBLICAN

    Why is the issue of abortion after 20 weeks (which frankly I agree with) tied to shutting down clinics? why not regulate the 20 weeks issue, and allow clinics to stay open to serve women?

    July 1, 2013 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  5. John

    "o

    Your kids have names in heaven"

    Has the judgment day happened already, or is that just one more religious fantasy?

    July 1, 2013 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  6. truthteller

    A desperate act from a desperate man. So much for Republicans wanting Government out of our lives.

    July 1, 2013 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  7. Texas 2

    Really – going this nuts over a bill that bans most abortions only after FIVE MONTHS is a little extreme. On top of that any procedures determined to be out of medical need are excepted. Personally, I'm one of the few in the middle on this issue and would prefer it be 6 months but don't make it out to be some kind of ban. Also the more real statistic is that it might force more like 10% (not nearly all or w/e this article says) of abortion clinics to close in the state – and even then many of them would likely re-open once they complied with the new regulations.

    July 1, 2013 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  8. John/kc

    If medical procedures of an abortion clinic must be the same as a hospital, then how about the dentist office when they enter your mouth and pull teeth? Same standards!

    July 1, 2013 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  9. dazzled

    Does anyone else find it ironic that the same week Rick Perry says "every life must be given a chance to realize its full potential and that every life matters", Texas executed their 500th inmate?

    July 1, 2013 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  10. TomGI

    I pray this derp is the GOP candidate for president in 2016.

    July 1, 2013 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  11. LifeIsLife

    Thank goodness someone recognizes that a life is a life, period, even if our judicial system and scientific community is too arrogant or stupid to tell people the truth. Stop crying foul over being prevented from murdering children and grow up.

    July 1, 2013 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  12. dangercreativity

    @Gigi is wrong. Many of us do not love King Perry, and have not benefited much at all from his 12 yr reign of terror on civil liberties, the environment, and education. Please DON'T judge the people of Texas based on the Perry's and the Bush's. They do not represent the ideals or intellect of a large (and growing) percentage of the Texas populace.

    July 1, 2013 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  13. Kotawolf

    This is Perry's platform... he was quoted last week that he wanted Roe Vs Wade to be HISTORY. He has pretty much said that he doesn't want women to have a choice in this.

    July 1, 2013 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  14. glad to live up north

    I can't believe how backward and unintelligent he people of Texas are to elect that idiot gov. twice he is about as smart as a box of rocks and talks like one to. Can you believe this was a leading contender along with Bachman for the Republicans really this is the best they have....another landslide in 2016 for Hilliary or any other Dem that runs

    July 1, 2013 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  15. Dan

    It's funny how Perry sees Texas women standing up for their personal liberty and freedom as anarchy. But it makes sense, since he's trying to grow government's power, restrict their rights, and increase government regulation. Freedom is anarchy to fans of big over reaching government like Perry.

    July 1, 2013 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  16. vbscript2

    "We are spending billions to fight religious extremists around the world and yet have our own brand of religious extremists right here in America."

    Because preventing people from killing innocent children is totally religious extremism and is exactly comparable to throwing acid on girls who want to go to school or trying to behead cartoonists who dare to make fun of Mohammed. Good call.

    July 1, 2013 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  17. Dan

    LifeIsLife, I think you might be confused, everyone thinks that a fetus is a life. Heck, a flower and a carrot is a life. But plants, animals and fetuses, while alive, aren't human beings and should not receive the same rights as an American citizen.

    July 1, 2013 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  18. rob

    Actually the blame rests squarely on the GOP's low IQ high intolerance Taliban approach which is so dear to Perry.

    July 1, 2013 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  19. rickforresignation

    Rick, Rick, Rick.... Buddy, you just don't get it... You ran for President with the platform "Get government out of our lives"... Now you want the government to legislate a personal issue... This is not the government's responsibility... when a female dies, they're not going to stand in front of the US government seeking judgment.... Not the Government's responsibility... Why don't you use this time, (and money_), to try and get the Texas School systems out of the cellar...

    July 1, 2013 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  20. MI Snow

    I just wish he gave a "hoot" when the baby is born... judging by the poor support for social services in Texas, he doesn't...

    July 1, 2013 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  21. Bob

    There is no support in the christian bible for the anti-abortion position – none. Even if there were, that would not provide a compelling basis for forcing everyone to follow a particular religion's take on the issue. But – there is nothing in the bible that addresses this issue. The religious dopes love to read whatever meaning they might want to find in religious texts into language that has nothing to do with that meaning – but – as is often the case – there is no support for considering abortion to be sinful or wrong in the bible. This whole issue, instead, revolves around certain groups of people trying to control others, and shove their viewpoint down others' throats. Enough, already.

    July 1, 2013 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  22. Catori

    The new border fence is progressing well. As soon as we have everyone in the right side of the fence, we can lock the gates & seal off Texas.

    July 1, 2013 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  23. recall perry

    Perry, Morsy, and uh-uh the third guy, what's the difference?
    Egyptians have more balls to clear the deck.

    July 1, 2013 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  24. David in LA

    I used to have a bumper sticker that read: "Gay Marriage is legal in Texas. Just ask Mrs. Perry".

    July 1, 2013 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  25. Fred Evil

    " preventing people from killing innocent children "
    Isn't happening, and isn't the point of the bill. The bill has nothing to do with CHILDREN, it involves FETUSES and ZYGOTES.
    Words have SPECIFIC MEANINGS, mis-using them completely invalidates any argument you may have.

    July 1, 2013 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
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