The ‘anti-abortion bill’ must receive a 3rd reading before heading back to the Senate.
Austin, Texas – Today, the Texas House of Representatives passed Senate Bill 8 on second reading by a vote of 96-47. The bill must pass the Texas House a third time before heading back to the Texas Senate, where the body will decide whether or not to concur with the changes made to the bill by the House.
State Representative Eddie Rodriguez issued the following statement in response to the vote: “SB 8 is the latest in the Texas Legislature’s war on a woman’s right to choose.
“The bill is inspired by heavily edited and widely discredited videos forged by anti-abortion activists who have faced criminal charges for their actions. SB 8 is not based on established science, nor would it do anything to advance women’s health. Instead, a federal judge recently found that such laws are mere ‘pretext for restricting abortion access.’
“Some of my conservative Republican colleagues hijacked SB 8 during today’s floor debate to use it as a vehicle for advancing their radical anti-abortion agenda. They passed a number of amendments over Democratic opposition that dramatically expanded the bill’s scope, but not before adding a ‘severability clause’ to the bill. They know that some of the bill’s provisions are unconstitutional and are willing to spend taxpayer dollars for the opportunity to chip away at women’s rights.
“The debate reached a flash point while we considered a despicable amendment by State Representative Matt Schaefer, the same representative responsible for the ‘show me your papers’ provision added to SB 4 in the Texas House. While the amendment was ultimately tabled, 65 members were willing to politicize the most personal and emotional decisions that people make in their lives.
“The Texas Legislature should leave important medical decisions to healthcare professionals and their patients. And if my colleagues are truly interested in reducing abortion, the research is clear: we must provide age-appropriate, science-based sex education and increase access to contraception in order to prevent unwanted pregnancies.”