Perry blames abortion rights activists for 'absolute anarchy'
July 1st, 2013
12:13 PM ET
7 years 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. Ed

    Rasing standards for abortion clinics is a good thing – they will comply with the new requirements. Also 20 weeks to decide to have an abortion is long enough – if after 5 months you don't get an abortion you made the choice not to get one. It is that simple.

    July 1, 2013 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  2. Ed

    Rasing standards for abortion clinics is a very good thing – they will comply with the new requirements. Also 20 weeks to decide to have an abortion is long enough – if after 5 months you don't get an abortion you made the choice not to get one. It is that simple.

    July 1, 2013 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  3. Annoying people

    God has nothing to do with US law, stop using it for your anti abortion arguments. Also, did anyone notice a majority of the people who are on this thread and against abortion seem illiterate...?

    July 1, 2013 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  4. MaryM

    The American Taliban are alive and well in Texas with Ayatollah Perry leading the way.

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

    Your kids have names in heaven

    July 1, 2013 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  6. abbydelabbey

    Translation of Perry's comments: We theocrats are in control and will dictate to women what they can or cannot do with their own bodies.

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

    July 1, 2013 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  7. truthbringsfreedom

    Nobody is particularly upset about the 20 week limit. Most people agree with that. But that is a red herring, the real issue and what everyone is upset about is the provisions requiring clinics to meet surgical center standards (much higher than required in most states). The effect will be to shut down 37 of the 42 clinics in the state. That move will effectively make abortions illegal in Texas for poor (and not so poor) women, because there will not be a clinic within travelling distance. The right is trying to make a legal right effectively impossible to exercise. That's what this is about, whether big government can take your rights away.

    July 1, 2013 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  8. Frank

    This is not about safe procedures, it's about Perry's bid for another presidential race. He decries the same tactics he has used many times.

    July 1, 2013 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  9. Lydia

    Please don't judge all Texans. Let's not forget the "unruly mob" and Wendy Davis is from Texas. I live here too, and I wish a Perry would drop off the face of the earth. Go BLUE Texas– it's gonna happen!!!

    July 1, 2013 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  10. tom l.

    Just to inform the uninformed here, the TEA Party really doesn't care about gay marriage. It's a social issue. They are about fiscal issues.

    July 1, 2013 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  11. rc roeder

    Good for Perry, lets remove the people from making choices. Lets all snap our heels together and Sieg Heil Perry. I would prefer only using one finger.

    July 1, 2013 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  12. Soft Kitty

    If you don't want a woman to have an abortion, then offer to adopt her child. How many anti-abortionists adopt? Not many, I bet!

    July 1, 2013 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  13. tony

    Abortion without conditions is the Law of the Land. By the Supreme Court. It is the Texas Taliban legislature who are the anarchists by definition.

    July 1, 2013 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  14. think about it

    If you don't want the government in your decisions about your body, then you need to protest the Affordible Care Act, because the government is dictating what type of care you can have and many other things. You are allowing government intrusion on your health issues by supporting it. And for the 'rape and domestic abuse' part of this issue.... 20 weeks is a little under 5 months. If you haven't done something before that point that's your own fault! FIVE MONTHS. That's plenty of time.

    July 1, 2013 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  15. See Novak

    Keep 'em outside in the hot Texas sun. Late-term abortion isn't HEALTH issue it is a ME issue.

    July 1, 2013 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  16. Speak the Truth

    People like Gov. Perry want government control over what people do with their own bodies and the choices they make regarding their own health care. Those who are patriots need to stop this intrusion into our personal freedom! Texas is becoming yet another state where politicians, not families, dictate what happens in the home. Stop the government takeover of healthcare. Stop Rick Perry!!!

    July 1, 2013 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  17. Mojojuju

    That picture of Perry makes my stomach clench. I think of him, standing over some poor woman who just found out at 21 weeks that her fetus has no brain and will die after birth–tell her that she has to go through the agony (and expense) of giving birth to that child. I picture that same condescending, patronizing gesture he's making there, as he tells her he knows what's best for her, so she shouldn't worry her pretty little head about it.

    And I want to vomit.

    July 1, 2013 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  18. me

    Some people feel they have the right to stick their nose in other people's business... you don't, so if you are not having an abortion, don't stick your nose into the business of someone who is, it's none of your business, no matter how much you think you've done some type of heroic thing saving an unborn child... next, the dolts of Texas will outlaw masturbation... can't let a child die in your hand... people are so quick to scream "God"... well, read the Bible, cities of people... men, women AND CHILDREN were "utterly destroyed"... If you bought into the notion that God said "utterly destroy" every man, woman and child in city XYZ, you Bible thumpers would stumble over each other to do so... wake up people, take the blinders off and focus on yourself...

    July 1, 2013 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  19. pjusa

    Abortion is killing no matter how you say it, "terminating a pregnancy", "aborting a fetus", blah-blah-blah. Liberals and those confused about "women's rights" have to say it in a way that doesn't sound so bad so that those getting and performing the abortion don't feel so guilty. The "viability" issue is just another smoke screen put out by the pro-killing crowd. A newborn is not "viable" on its own. It still needs someone to feed it and tend to it otherwise it will die. In the case of an unborn child the mother is the only one who can feed it and tend to it. From the moment of conception we all began to grow, develop, mature and eventually die. Abortion is just killing an innocent child in the earliest stage of life.

    July 1, 2013 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  20. Buddy

    Killing babies is no right and is not right.

    July 1, 2013 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  21. Paul

    Jerry W, that 20 week old fetus may have fingers and toes, but did you also know it has no bones? No solid ones at least.

    And Chris, crystals and puddles can grow, does that mean they're alive too?? Be careful not to kill any on your way home.

    July 1, 2013 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  22. Concerned

    @Ed... Are you a woman.... Is Ed short for Edwina?

    July 1, 2013 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  23. terrorist children of the military industrial complex

    Perry said Monday that a group of people have never taken over the voting process at the capitol in the state’s history.

    Usually that is reserved for corporations.

    July 1, 2013 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  24. GT66

    Two words to all the people against Texas legislating higher standards for abortions: Kermit Gosnell.

    July 1, 2013 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  25. Polijukie

    A woman's body is more deadly than a gun, that's why you must legislate one over the other.

    July 1, 2013 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
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