WFAA News 8 reported Thursday, Oct. 31, breaking news from a Texas appeals court on new abortion rules now in effect for abortion clinics. It is a major court decision that impacts a large number of Texas women. On Thursday evening, the court reversed the prior ruling from this past summer, which means “women seeking abortions may have trouble finding a clinic tomorrow,” according to the ABC News affiliate’s 10 p.m. newscast. About 12 clinics providing abortion services before the reversed ruling will no longer be able to offer those services beginning Friday, Nov. 1.
News 8 said Planned Parenthood confirmed that the ruling has a direct impact on their clinics at locations in Fort Worth, Killeen, Waco, McAllen, and Harlingen. Many see the reverse in ruling as a violation of their rights, while those opposed to abortion call it a victory. Senator Wendy Davis, whose filibuster on the opposition to Section 2 of the Women’s Healthcare bill earlier this year cast her as one of the top Democratic leaders in Texas, fought against such an impact on behalf of Texas women. Following Thursday’s ruling, Danielle Wells with Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas said, “One out of three women in Texas will now be unable to access safe abortion services. And, there will be not one provider that’s open west of I-35.” She vowed, “This is not over,” predicting the fight will last well into winter.
The judges whose ruling in the 20-page document from the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals reinstating House Bill 2 said, “There is the possibility, if not the probability, however, that requiring all physicians who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at a hospital may increase the cost of accessing an abortion provider and decrease the number of physicians available to perform abortions.” Their ruling drew an out crying of protests and outbursts in the State Capitol during its debate. Planned Parenthood vowed to continue the fight, Wells saying, “If Texans showed the nation and lawmakers anything this summer, it’s that Texans care for the health and safety of women. And, that’s why we’ll continue to do everything we can to protect their access to safe medical care.”