Wendy Davis: Disputed Texas abortion bill likely to pass
July 9th, 2013
01:32 PM ET
5 years ago

Wendy Davis: Disputed Texas abortion bill likely to pass

Austin, TX (CNN) - Two weeks after her marathon filibuster against new abortion restrictions in Texas made her instant political celebrity, reality has set in for State Senator Wendy Davis.

Following the launch of a "Stand with Texas Women" bus tour with fellow Democrats to oppose the state's hotly contested abortion bill, Davis conceded to CNN the measure is likely to pass.

"It will be very difficult because unfortunately the voices that have been here crying out against this bill are not going to be heard," Davis told CNN in a brief interview.

"But I don't think it's the end. It's the beginning of a battle line," she added.

Last month, Davis staged an 11-hour filibuster that temporarily stalled the bill, which would ban abortions after 20 weeks and create new, potentially practice-ending requirements for doctors performing the procedures across the state.

Texas Governor Rick Perry responded to the legislative roadblock by calling lawmakers back for a special session to reconsider the measure, essentially assuring its speedy passage through the Republican controlled House and Senate.

Due to tough statehouse rules governing filibusters, top legislative aides in the Texas Capitol said it's unlikely Davis would be able to stop the bill a second time.

"That's probably the case," Davis agreed.

The popular state senator was mum on the subject of running for governor after Perry announced Monday he would not seek a fourth term in office.

"I'm not going to comment on that right now. We've got our hands full trying to beat this bad bill back," Davis said.

Still, she appears to be keeping the door open to a gubernatorial campaign. At the "Stand with Texas Women" rally, Davis repeatedly spoke past the abortion issue, jabbing Perry and top GOP leaders for becoming what she called "a real threat to people's rights."

"This truly is a turning point, a pivotal time for us to step up and take back what our Texas is and should be," Davis told CNN.

Cecile Richards, the president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, said it's too early to accept defeat on the abortion issue.

"You never give up," Richards said, holding out hope Republican lawmakers would reconsider.

"You'd hope they might rethink their position. All we can do is make sure is that the voices of women and men and families in this state are heard."

Filed under: Abortion • Texas • Wendy Davis
soundoff (404 Responses)
  1. MNfree

    Sorry, but people are vilifying this bill for no reason at all. If you can't make up your mind on keeping it or not after 20 weeks, there's an issue there. It makes these places safer. I mean really, abortion is legal, and it is a woman's right to choose. This bill does not reject that, it is just making it a more important decision, and if you do decide to go through with it, then it will also be safer.

    July 9, 2013 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  2. She booted him

    Ms Davis is the main reason Perry is not seeking a 4th term. He will let the new republican candidate lose to this women in the next election. Politics is like a pendulum that sometimes swings to the right but them quickly moves to the left, it is time for the left to be heard during the next election.

    July 9, 2013 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  3. gleadore@comcast.net

    That's why old Ricky boy is retiring, he'd lose anyway! Maybe he isn't as stupid as he looks and sounds after all!!

    July 9, 2013 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  4. Greg

    Why don't people spend their time focusing on what causes people to have abortions, rather than going after the symptom? The number of abortions would drop like a rock with education and preventative methods (birth control/condoms/etc). That the GOP essentially ignores that makes me think they really don't care about reducing unwanted pregnancies. In fact, it seems like they want those unwanted pregnancies, and by restricting abortion access, women are forced to go full term. Which leads to women having to give up on (or at least cut back on) education and careers, because God forbid the same people who want to block abortion are willing to give assistance to the women whose lives they are now changing.

    Reducing abortion access while not reducing unwanted pregnancies and at the same time refusing to give assistance is really an awful way of going about business.

    July 9, 2013 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  5. jefnvk

    Only things I care about in the abortion debate:

    a) Define person at a federal level. It is ridiculous that we can have different states drawing lines at different time periods. Before that line, it is not a person, one cannot be charged for murder for causing its death, one can abort to their hearts content. After that point, only in a clearly recognized danger to the mother can any abortion be performed.

    b) Abortion clinics are medical clinics, no matter how much you want to pretend they are not. They should be regulated under any rules that similar institutes are (i.e., if abortion is performed through surgery at that location, they are regulated under rules for surgical locations, if its drug induced, they are regulated like doctors offices).

    c) Men get an out as well. We don't want a mistake one night to ruin the next 18 years of our lives either. We should get the same right to pay some money and be done with an inconvenient situation as well. Sign the papers, pay an admin fee plus the cost of the average abortion in the area, and the woman is automatically issued a restraining order keeping you away from her and the baby.

    Do those couple things, you'll never hear me complain about the practice, much as I despise it. Tell me they are overbearing and onerous, I'll consider you no different than gun owners that can't agree to any rules at all.

    July 9, 2013 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  6. brewgeek

    The issue isn't banning abortions. the issue is stopping late term abortions. I would even like to see a clause for rape/incest/medical emergency. The other issue as I see it is they want the clinics to provide a more hospital like environment. With a doctor present in case of emergency etc. How is this bad for women's health? Don't get me wrong I understand why the law is being put in place and I understand why some oppose it, but from a middle of the road person the restrictions seam like they are definitely in place for the women's health and to stop the premature birth (what a late term abortion really is) of a baby.... another Human like you and me.....

    July 9, 2013 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  7. brewgeek

    @Greg Totally agree, and as an interim measure we should probably look at the whole adoption issue as well. Maybe find out why people would rather go halfway around the world to adopt rather than look right in our own backyard......

    July 9, 2013 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  8. Fair is Fair


    @Fair is Fair there is a difference between someone who wants to take their pregnancy to term and one who does not
    Let me see if I got this right. The difference between whether or not the killing of a baby is murder is if the pregnancy is "wanted" or not? Seriously????? That is some really warped thinking.

    July 9, 2013 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  9. Jim

    So abortion is murder but 500 inmates put to death by the state isn't?

    July 9, 2013 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  10. Rudy NYC

    Larry the Lobster wrote on page 3:

    Unless your wife wait six-and-a-half months to have her abortion, I don't see how your comment is relevant to this bill. Instead of posting based on a knee-jerk reaction or a doctrinaire political stance, why not find out what the bill Wendy Richards is fighting for actually does, and then decide for yourself what you think about it?
    With all of the clinics that will close, there will probably be a 16 month waiting period to get an abortion at the few that will remain open.

    July 9, 2013 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  11. krazygrrl9

    Thanks for trying, Wendy. In a state where hungry children is not a priority, it's good to see that there will be more of them.

    July 9, 2013 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  12. Guess

    So just sayin, if your wife were raped, and pregnancy was a result, you would have no problem raising it? and the child would be treated and loved as your own? lie if you must, but dont expect me to believe it.

    July 9, 2013 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  13. Jim Hahn

    I hope that Wendy decides to run for Governor and put Texas on the right path to sanity instead of it's current path of irrelevance. The reason that Perry isn't running is because he knows he can't win. There's way too many Texans who can't stand the man. If all the Democrats and Independents in Texas would get out and vote, they would have a chance of taking their state back.

    July 9, 2013 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  14. brewgeek

    what I also find amusing is the Left is complaining that the bill is being pushed through without hearing opposition......like the Right complained about the gun laws the Left put in...... It's Ok when I do it, just not when you do......silly

    July 9, 2013 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  15. Michele

    I do NOT understand how any woman can live in such a hateful, backward, neanderthal state. Job or no job, family or no family, if I had the misfortune to be living there, I would be history. The state is not even worth saving. I've said it before.............build a fence around Texas and give it back to Mexico.

    July 9, 2013 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  16. Rick McDaniel

    A court will issue an injunction, just as they did in WI.

    July 9, 2013 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  17. Jerry

    Wendy Davis: So much fuss about a loosing cause. Oops! Sorry! For a moment I forgot she was a idiotic Debbie Whats (Her) Man Schultz wannabe.

    July 9, 2013 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  18. jay

    Guess mexicans got it made now..........more kids, more welfare, more tax dollars down the drain.

    July 9, 2013 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  19. EDDIE

    To all the repubs who don't want big government in personal lives.You have failed once again.I got news for you it's about a woman making her own choices about her body.In other words the baby in her stomach is"NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS".

    July 9, 2013 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  20. lupinesmile

    What I find strange is that the "pro-lifers" fight for all children to be born, then ignore them after their birth and complain about them being deadbeats and burdens on society. I also wonder why every single "pro-lifer" doesn't adopt children. There are plenty of children right now who are desperate for a home. Once again, ignoring them after they are born.

    July 9, 2013 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  21. Michael

    You know what? You lefties are right. I encourage all liberal women to have abortions.

    July 9, 2013 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  22. Fair is Fair

    James PDX

    Mike said – Abortion is murder, plain and simple.
    Then so is male masturbation, any form of birth control, and abstinence. All of these things prevent a human from forming just as effectively, or possibly more so, than abortion.
    Now this takes the cake. Instead of making yourself look woefully inept, learn the difference between PREVENTING a human life and TAKING a human life.

    July 9, 2013 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  23. Lisa P.


    Violence begets violence; and there is so much of it in the world. Respecting life starts with one person. If we respect life in the womb and realize its fragility perhaps other forms of violence will dissipate. Way to go Texas. Proud pro-lifer.
    July 9, 2013 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm

    Abuse of state power for coercive purposes begets more abuse of state power. You clearly could care less about respecting the one person who matters in this situation, the pregnant woman. Disrespect breeds more disrespect - you will get a taste of that soon enough, because forcing your views on others mattered more to you than convincing anyone, honestly, of "the fragility of life." You should be ashamed of yourself. Texas is a barren, shriveled womb and you are a miscarried fetus that will never come to term.

    July 9, 2013 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  24. us_1776

    I hope that SCOTUS strikes down all these ridiculous GOP state laws that are designed to be nothing more than an end-run around Roe v. Wade.

    There is not one shred of medical evidence that suggests any of these onerous multi-million dollar medical facility enhancements are the least bit necessary.


    July 9, 2013 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  25. mike

    MNFree wrote: "If you can't make up your mind on keeping it or not after 20 weeks, there's an issue there. It makes these places safer."

    The problem is some truly horrifying fetal issues (including some that effectively mean a DOA baby) may not become apparent prior to that point, and the bill makes no exceptions for such cases.

    July 9, 2013 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
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