In the nick of time, a federal judge ruled today that part of Texas’s new anti-abortion law passed by the Republican-led state legislature is unconstitutional and another part placed an undue burden on women.
The contentious law that Democratic state Senator and now gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis filibustered was set to go into effect tomorrow, the 29th of October.
U.S. District Judge Lee Yeakel found that the Republican law restricted access to abortion clinics and violated the rights of abortion doctors to care for their patients. His decision was final, not just an injunction against the impending law.
Texas attorney general Greg Abbott claimed that the law was meant to provide better medical protections to women and fetuses.
Yeakel responded to that argument as not having a rational relationship to the state’s responsibility to women or fetuses. He concluded that the provision “does not bear a rational relationship to the legitimate right of the State in preserving and promoting fetal life or a woman’s health and, in any event, places a substantial obstacle in the path of a woman seeking an abortion of a nonviable fetus and is thus an undue burden to her.”
A.G. Abbot is expected to file an emergency appeal of Yeakel’s decision.
The judge did not block the part of the law that bans abortions after 20 weeks, but this ruling is still a huge victory for Texas women, for justice, for individual freedom and for sanity.