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Texas House Vote Nears On Abortion Restrictions

Jack Fink, CBS 11 News | CBSDFW.COM
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(credit: KTVT/KTXA) Jack Fink
Jack moved to Dallas after three years at WESH-TV, the NBC affil...
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AUSTIN (CBSDFW.COM) -  All day Tuesday, pro-life and pro-choice lawmakers debated House Bill 2. It calls for abortion providers to meet additional requirements and it would ban abortions after 20 weeks.

Democratic lawmakers held up hangers, saying the bill would lead some women to have back-alley abortions, and die.

State Representative Senfronia Thompson, a Democrat from Houston, asked the chamber, “Have you thought about that? Have you thought about how you’ll drive women back to the coat hanger days where the illegal abortions have taken place?”

Upstairs in the gallery, a crowd comprised mostly of anti-abortion activists cheered when they heard the response by Representative Ron Simmons, a Republican from Carrollton. “I want my constituents current and future to have the best choice for life, that’s what I want,” he said.

Even before the House debate began inside, both sides rallied once again outside the Capitol.

Planned Parenthood unveiled its newly wrapped bus, which will go on a tour across the state.

Democratic State Senator Wendy Davis of Fort Worth says they want to hear women’s stories. “To stand with you, against a state leadership that has become a very real threat to Texans’ rights and well-being of Texas families,” she said.

The group Students for Life of America showed up at the Planned Parenthood rally to get their message heard.

“We’re here as back-up to help organize the pro-life Texas groups and give them any support that we can,” said Alexa Coombs, a member of the group.

Once approved, the House will have to pass the bill several times.

After that, the State Senate Health and Human Services committee will vote on the bill, which could happen as early as Thursday.

The full Senate will consider the measures after that.

(©2013 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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