Amid Wave of Anti-Choice Laws, Texas GOP Holds Public Hearing on Putting Women to Death for Obtaining Abortions
A Texas state House committee on Monday night devoted several hours to discussing potentially subjecting women to the death penalty if they obtain abortions.
Apparently seeking to capitalize on a political moment in which states have passed some of the most restrictive anti-choice laws in the country since Roe vs. Wade passed in 1973, the state House Judiciary Committee held a public hearing that stretched into the early morning hours on House Bill 896. The proposed legislation would criminalize abortion in the state without exception and would classify the medical procedure as a homicide—making it possible for women who get abortion care to be executed by the state.
Republican state Rep. Tony Tinderholt introduced the bill, saying it would make women more “personally responsible.”
The proposal includes a specific attack on Roe vs. Wade, noting that state officials would be required to treat abortion as a crime “regardless of any contrary federal law, executive order, or court decision.”
With opposition even from the anti-choice group Texans for Life and with the committee reportedly reluctant to send the bill to the full House, H.B. 896 is currently unlikely to become law in Texas. But women’s rights advocates expressed shock and outrage that the bill was given the state’s first-ever public hearing on a proposal to classify women as criminals for obtaining abortions.
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