There have been dramatic scenes in Texas after a bill that threatened to close every abortion clinic in the state was overturned just hours after it was passed.
The law was initially approved by the Republican-controlled senate after a day of extraordinary scenes during which Democrats were accused of attempting to filibuster the bill by embarking on a marathon speech to run the debate out of time.
But Texas Lieutenant Governor David Dewhust has now reversed his decision after acknowledging Republicans missed the deadline to pass the vote after protesters reportedly shouted them down during the final 15 minutes before the vote deadline.
Republicans insisted they had started voting before the midnight deadline and passed the bill in time. But computer records of the voting were checked and revealed they were out of time.
The new law would have banned abortion procedures after 20 weeks of pregnancy and demanded that clinics upgrade their facilities and be reclassified as ‘ambulatory surgical centres’.
The bill also demanded doctors performing abortions must be granted the right to admit patients to their clinic first by a hospital within 30 miles of the premises…
Speaking before the vote, Cecile Richards, president of the Planned Parenthood Action Fund, said: “If this passes, abortion would be virtually banned in the state of Texas, and many women could be forced to resort to dangerous and unsafe measures.”
During the debate women’s rights supporters had screamed protests from the public gallery while in the hall outside the Senate chamber, hundreds more protesters wearing orange T-shirts queued for a seat.
In dramatic scenes Democrat Wendy Davis was accused of filibustering after she began speaking against the bill at 11:18am and was only halted at 10:03pm, less than two hours before the midnight deadline, after three complaints from Republicans.
Senate rules dictate speakers must stay on topic and remain standing without physical support or breaks for meals or to use the bathroom…
Governor Dewhust eventually halted the speech after determining Ms Davis had strayed off topic when she talked about a sonogram bill passed in 2011.
Texas’ miserable bible-thumping governor, Rick Perry, called this special session of the state legislature just to pass the latest attack by Republican political hacks on women’s rights. He didn’t count on women throughout Texas spontaneously marching upon the Republican-controlled state legislature to do everything they could to impede passage of the bill.
Republicans tried everything in their trick bag to stop Wendy Davis. They ruled she was out of order when one of her fellow Democrats helped her put on a back brace to ease the pain of standing, trying to school the ignoranuses before her.
Meanwhile the visitors’ gallery filled with women from all over the state. Lines snaked out to the street of women clamoring to get in to speak out against this reactionary and patriarchal law. And when Ms. Davis was finally forced to relinquish the podium, the mass of women began to shout out individually and collectively from the gallery.
The tumult forced delay after delay until the Republicans were finally defeated by the clock.
UPDATE: These rat-bastard Republicans actually tried to change the time stamp on the voting record printout to save their miserable anti-women law. They were confronted with a side-by-side comparison of the attempted fraud – posted on Twitter.