Texas’ anti-choice lawmakers—almost all Republicans, joined by a few Democrats—have spent the last decade and a half or so chipping away abortion access in the state. Yet every session, we’re told to be thankful something more restrictive didn’t make it to the governor’s desk.
It would be difficult to imagine a 2015 session that could have rivaled the 2013 special summer session in terms of restrictions. But dangerous bills did get traction this year—and some made their way into law.
Days before the Texas legislature adjourned for the year, anti-choice lawmakers made it a priority to make it harder for the most vulnerable minors who have unplanned pregnancies to get legal abortion care in the state. But the bill’s proposal and passage didn’t go unnoticed.
The Texas legislature approved two measures on Friday that will make it harder for some of the most marginalized Texans to access cancer treatment and legal abortion care.
On Memorial Day 2015, the Texas Senate passed an anti-abortion bill that would make it far harder for abused, abandoned, and neglected minors who rely on “judicial bypass” to obtain an abortion. The bill would also require doctors who provide abortion care to demand government ID from their patients.
If HB 3994 passes through the senate, Texas’ parental consent law will be even stricter than it is already, forcing minors who cannot obtain permission to navigate a slew of complicated, humiliating, and sometimes impossible hurdles to receive reproductive health care.
Republicans in the Maine legislature are pushing forward a TRAP bill that would task the state Department of Health and Human Services with creating new licensing requirements targeting abortion clinics across the state.
I can’t help but feel frustrated that no matter what deals our progressive lawmakers strike, someone’s getting thrown under the bus—and, so often, that someone is a Texan who has the least political power, the fewest economic resources, the lowest level of socio-cultural capital.
Arkansas state Rep. Justin Harris, who handed his adopted daughters over to a man who raped one of them, still thinks he’s entitled to pass legislation that could force teen girls to bear their rapist’s child.
Two Connecticut state legislators this month introduced identical bills that would require physicians to notify parents or legal guardians 48 hours in advance of giving a minor child an abortion.