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. Rudy NYC


    I dont think its unreasonable to expect a mother to make a decision by the mid point of the pregnancy, the UK restricts abortions after 24 weeks as an example. The devil is in the details with any bill but if it bans abortions after 20 weeks with an exception for medical reasons then I would not have a problem with it.
    The biggest opposition to the bill is the fact that it shuts down nearly all of the abortion clinics throughout the state. There is a difference between restricting abortions after a given number of weeks, compared to an outright ban.

    July 1, 2013 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  2. anonymous

    it's not just that abortions are banned at 20 weeks, it's all the other stuff in the bill that will essentially close all down.....I believe THAT more than the number of weeks is really what sane people are so against. Not to mention that it seems mostly MEN are pushing this, not women.

    July 1, 2013 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  3. Laura

    Even 20 weeks it too late, When I moved to this country almost 20 years ago, I was shocked to read advertisings for late-terms abortions. Never expected such legalized murder would be allowed in a country where animal protected better than unborn children. In my former country abortions were allowed only first 12 weeks. Here even 20 years later nothing changed if we still debating is it ok to cut babies heads off in clinics or not ok. We must stop this barbaric practice to kill children. Who worry about their own "body rights", think faster or use better protection.

    July 1, 2013 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  4. cushing1961

    I am a rare Republican pro choice person. I have no problem with clinics being held to a higher standard and forcing them to be closer to a Hospital. I am not so naive that I do not catch that the repblican Pro Life side are really just trying to thin out the abortion groups.. but in light of some very bad clinical practices in our Country, I just have no problem with some clinics being forced to step up and do even better for the women they serve. If some have to move their clinics to meet the logistical limitations of this bill, that is ok by me as well. That is what funding from private groups will help with. I do not want access to Abortion to go away because it clearly has a place.. but it is NOT birth control and it is still a procedure that must be taken seriously. This should never be an easy decision for anyone to make.. and other options should always be looked into INCLUDING allowing the father to choose to keep HIS child if he should decide he wants to do that!.. but I will always defend a womans right to have an abortion under certain circumstances. I can't help what will happen to her when she stands before God for misusing this right...but I can say that in MY opinion, it is her right to have to have that conversation with God at that time if she so chooses to make this choice for the wrong reasons (not defined by me).... I will not Judge her..

    July 1, 2013 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  5. ????

    The question is not about the 20 week rule perse, it is about the other part repugs don't publicize, "would have required all clinics to be graded as surgical centers, with all doctors required to have admitting privileges at hospitals"...which would basically force all but a couple of abortion clinics in texas to close. Supposedly, Perry wants you to believe this is for the benefit of the women. Can you se ANY law being made forcing men to drive across state lines or hundreds of miles to see a physician? Yeah...thought so. Women are still treated as second class citizens in this country.

    July 1, 2013 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  6. Troglodytes Entertaining All

    Tell me again... Wh don't we just let Texas secede??

    July 1, 2013 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  7. bs1

    I'm not sure how Perry thinks that this nonsense can help him politically, there are at most perhaps 10% of voters on each side who will vote solely on the abortion issue. The remaining 80% of voters are not blindly single issue and look at the big picture.

    July 1, 2013 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  8. J Dub

    I notice that the only group that seems to waging this intense war against a woman's right to choose, is that of the white male persuasion. While I'm of the opinion that racism is a weakness of the mind, and an illogical perspective on life, I have to wonder if this has anything to do with the current census data that categorizes Whites as the newest minority, along with the first time since census data has been gathered, that the birth/death ratio for Whites is showing a deficit. Hmmmm!

    July 1, 2013 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  9. J

    Perry, you're an idiot. Quit wasting your state's time and money on dealing with an issue that should have been settled 40 years ago. There are real problems to deal with.

    July 1, 2013 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  10. Pan3

    Stop the gov't from interfering with our bodies!

    July 1, 2013 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  11. wonderabout

    Not one person who is pro-choice has advocated that abortion should be a form of birth control – to make the decision to abort a child is a heart-wrenching one – BUT should be legal and available if necessary, PERIOD. Perry is a knuckle-dragging neanderthal who is one of the many Republicans who want to cut food stamps, head start, housing assistance, K-12 education, health care, and will gladly sign all those kids up to die in the many wars for profit – supporting his corporate owners.

    July 1, 2013 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  12. jjh

    A doctor on site, emergency surgery available on site....I don't know if that is totally bogus.

    July 1, 2013 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  13. cashmoneybrother

    to be clear, Rick P will allow for 'Devil-worshippers' (in Texas) to give birth to incestuous Children (on purpose) by children that are raped through incestuous relations during Devil-worshipping Rituals (that go on in Texas on a regular basis), even though the Bible teaches US that those that use incest to create babies is Unchristian.

    Texas has seen an increase in the number of Devil-worshipping Rituals and Groups' registration during the years that Rick Perry has been the Texas Governor. These same groups have been funding his campaign to end abortion, so that they can proceed with the birth of the alleged "Anti-Christ" – these people do believe that by having sex with their children they will give birth to 'Satan's Son' and that is unchristian!

    Why does Rick Perry support the possibility of having "Satan's Son" be born in Texas?
    He talks about anarchy, but what about the incest that Rick Perry doesn't condemn? Why does Rick Perry allow for the Devil-worshippers to continue their quest of trying to give birth to 'Satan's Son'? There have been many reports of the incest that goes on in Texas, but to allow for the Devil-worshippers to keep trying to bring 'Satan's Son' to America/ Rick is not Christian in his beliefs if he continues to allow for the Devil -worshippers & their sexual incestuous rituals to go on without concern for the offspring/Devil Child.

    July 1, 2013 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  14. Jules

    Somehow it is anarchy for women to have a right to choose what to do with their own bodies, but it is nor anarchy to say that a woman must have a baby. I just don't get it.

    July 1, 2013 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  15. No longer a republican

    If the great State of Texas is so pro life, why is it the leading death penalty state????
    Seems counter intuitive.
    I switched parties this year – Republicans just don't get it anymore

    July 1, 2013 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  16. Jules

    Oh wait – I forgot – this is Rick Perry saying this. Once again he proves that the GOP can't get their viewpoints from being contradictory.

    July 1, 2013 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  17. Lisa B

    Read the Bill. If it threatens the life of the mother OR if it is determined that the baby will not survive, they can still abort. Why would you wait until you are 20+ weeks pregnant to have an elective abortion unless it was life threatening?

    July 1, 2013 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  18. Lord Toronaga

    As a conservative Republican I can not understand why Republicans are against women killing their babies...Especially when they are most likely the children of the bottom dwelling democrats. I wish we gave more money to abortion... Abortions are a wonderful thing !!

    July 1, 2013 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  19. jmcalli

    Well, he's wrong. It wasn't "absolute anarchy." But even if it had been, anarchy would be preferable to tyranny.

    July 1, 2013 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  20. rad666

    This man should look up the meaning of anarchy. a state of society without government or law. THAT is exactly what we have a bunch of hypocritical morons not government, Stay out of womans reproductive systems you idiot.

    July 1, 2013 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  21. leigh

    Time and time again this issue has been presented to the American people and again and again the people of this country have, by a majority, said that they support safe and legal abortion.

    You want to save children? Go gather in your arms all of the kids living in poverty and violence because they were born into "families" that completely love and respect. Unwanted children become the adults you want to lock in prison.

    July 1, 2013 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  22. leigh

    Completely "lack" love and respect.

    July 1, 2013 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  23. Kate Johnson

    If this was just about the 20 weeks rule, I'd have no problem with it. The problem I have is that it so severely regulates the clinics and doctors that it will result in just 5 locations in the entire state where the procedure can be preformed. They are doing a end around to keep all women, including rape and incest victims from terminating their pregnancy at all.

    July 1, 2013 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  24. DJR

    Seems the media fails and fails again to report what is truth! The protestors? Many are from out of state! The state is ruled by repubs because the people don't want awful decisions like killing babies to be the rule in Texas. Don't like it, get out, leave go to Cali, get all that you want there, but don't tell people who Perry and the state legis is for not to! See Egypt? Start demanding protestors ID be state valid, they are NOT.

    July 1, 2013 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  25. Michael

    Polls show most Texans DO NOT want this bill passed. As a proud Texan Perry once again is making us look like fools.

    July 1, 2013 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
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