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abortion

A federal appeals court has granted a Texas request to reinstate restrictions on abortion providers after a lower court blocked the state from fully implementing the new law.

Texas abortion providers’ Monday victory was short-lived. The U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday reversed a federal district court ruling that found part of the state's new abortion regulations unconstitutional, meaning the provisions of House Bill 2 could take effect immediately if state officials choose to enforce them.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

Fort Worth’s new Planned Parenthood center would have stopped offering abortions if the new Texas abortion law had gone into effect this week. A federal judge ruled that certain new abortion restrictions passed by the Texas Legislature are unconstitutional and should not take effect. Outside the center, reviews were mixed.

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Five stories that have North Texas talking: An endangered black rhino will soon be put up for auction, the Texas abortion ruling generates big headlines, what Dallas was like leading up to the John F. Kennedy assassination, and more:

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Update, 7:52 p.m. Monday: A federal judge has ruled that new abortion restrictions passed by the Texas Legislature are unconstitutional and should not take effect as planned on Tuesday. Texas officials immediately appealed the ruling, and the case could eventually head to the U.S. Supreme Court.

District Judge Lee Yeakel blocked one part of the restriction, while allowing another provision to stand.

Yeakel ruled that a state provision that requires doctors performing abortions to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles of the abortion facility "places a substantial obstacle in the path of a woman seeking an abortion of a nonviable fetus."

UpdateWith a federal judge blocking enforcement of a key restriction on abortion in Texas, here’s reaction from Gov. Rick Perry:

“Today’s decision will not stop our ongoing efforts to protect life and ensure the women of our state aren’t exposed to any more of the abortion-mill horror stories that have made headlines recently. We will continue fighting to implement the laws passed by the duly-elected officials of our state, laws that reflect the will and values of Texans.”

NARAL Pro Choice America President Ilyse Hogue:

"We are pleased but not surprised by this development. It has been clear from day one that the laws advanced by Governor Perry and others are unconstitutional and put women at greater risk. We will continue to fight to ensure all parts of this law, and other laws restricting women's health care options, which are clearly unconstitutional are defeated."


The fight over abortion in Texas is being played out in federal court, where abortion rights activists are challenging a new state law.

The measure bans abortions at 20 weeks, adds building requirements for clinics and places more rules on doctors who perform abortions. Some clinics have shut down, saying they can't comply with the law set to go into effect Oct. 29.

PolitiFact.com

On the day that state Sen. Wendy Davis announced her candidacy for governor, Texas Right To Life released an ad claiming that Davis, a Fort Worth Democrat, "opposes any limits on abortion." 

PolitiFact Texas researched the claim and rated it "false."   Here's the analysis.  

A lawsuit attempting to block parts of a new restrictive abortion law is expected to wrap up today. Plaintiffs hope the judge will find certain provisions of the law unconstitutional. 

Plaintiffs -- including Planned Parenthood, the American Civil Liberties Union, Whole Woman's Health and the Center for Reproductive Rights -- are challenging two key provisions of the abortion law, arguing each creates an undue burden on women seeking an abortion, which makes each unconstitutional.

One requires the physician to give two rounds of abortion-inducing medication to the patient in person. The second requires physicians to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles of where they perform the abortion.

Shelley Kofler / KERA News

In Dallas on Monday, Attorney General Greg Abbott defended a new state abortion law being challenged in federal court this week.

State of Texas

The Texas attorney general's office says new abortion limits seek to expressly protect fetal life -- not just the safety of the woman terminating a pregnancy.

Advocacy groups have sued in federal court to block as unconstitutional parts of an abortion law that threw the Legislature into chaos over the summer. A judge is hearing arguments in court today in Austin.

Republican Party of Texas

The Republican Party of Texas has wasted no time in trying to pin a liberal label on Democrat Wendy Davis who announced her bid for governor Thursday.

Dane Walters / KERA News

Today, on her first full day as a candidate for governor, State Senator Wendy Davis, will make her case to business leaders at the Fort Worth Rotary Club. Advisers say it’s important for the Democratic contender to combat the “liberal” label opponents want to pin on her.

Shelley Kofler / KERA News

Next week State Senator Wendy Davis, a Fort Worth Democrat, will officially tell us whether she plans to run for governor.

State Democratic Party Chair Gilberto Hinojosa says Davis hasn't confided in him but he thinks he knows what she’ll say.

The Texas Senate spent another late night debating some of the toughest abortion restrictions in the nation. But this time, things turned out as expected.

Senators voted 19-11 to send the bill to Gov. Rick Perry for a signature. The Texas Tribune reports that thousands of protesters outside the Capitol erupted after the decision. But inside the chamber there was none of the raucous yelling and chanting that ran the clock out on the bill two and a half weeks ago.

In a major victory for the anti-abortion movement, the Texas state Senate passed a sweeping bill early Saturday that has become a flashpoint in the national abortion debate. Gov. Rick Perry is expected to sign it in short order.

But the fight is not over. Abortion rights supporters say that the new law attempts to overturn Roe vs. Wade in Texas, and that's why they plan to take their fight to the courts.

Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Update, Saturday 11 a.m.: Pro-abortion-rights protesters say they don't believe the DPS statement about feces and urine, and the Texas Tribune couldn't find a single DPS officer who reported confiscating bodily fluids.

Courtney Collins / KERA News

The “Stand With Texas Women” bus tour parked in the middle of a sea of orange in Fort Worth Wednesday night.

Senator Wendy Davis along with other North Texas Democrats and hundreds of pro-choice activists gathered to rally for women’s rights.

Shelley Kofler / KERA News

Republicans in the Texas House have passed the bill that bans most abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.  It’s now headed to the Senate, where it is also expected to pass.

Knowing they don’t have enough votes to stop the bill, pro-choice Democrats are taking their fight to the streets. Their “Stand With Texas Women” road trip”  stopped in Dallas Wednesday morning.

Veronica Zaragovia / KUT News

The Texas House of Representatives has approved new abortion limits less than two weeks after Senate Republicans failed to finish work on the bill amid a filibuster and raucous protests.

Shelley Kofler, KERA

Final approval from the Texas House could come as early as today for a ban on most abortions beyond 20-weeks of pregnancy. 

officer.com

The Texas House unanimously passed a memorial resolution this morning honoring Hood County Sheriff's Deputy Lance McLean this morning. 

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT News

The steps of the state Capitol were awash in orange and blue Monday night as the Texas House prepares for the abortion bill to come to the floor Tuesday.

After pro-choice activists packed the Capitol and helped kill abortion restrictions two weeks ago, the right-to-life crowd is leaving nothing to chance.

Hundreds of people filed paperwork to testify on SB 1, so while public comment began Monday before noon, it didn't wrap until early Tuesday morning.

Texas Legislature Online streaming

More than 1700 people lined up this morning to speak before the Senate Health and Human Services committee on a bill that would add new abortion restrictions in Texas.

After an all-afternoon (and almost all-night) hearing, a Texas House committee approved the abortion restrictions that protesters and filibustering state Sen. Wendy Davis (D-Fort Worth) stalled last week.

Texas Legislature Online streaming / Texas Tribune

Nearly 2,000 people have signed up to speak for or against House Bill 2 -- which would add new abortion restrictions in Texas.

The first witness did not get the microphone until more than an hour of Tuesday's committee meeting had passed. Panel members spoke first to question the bill's author, Parker's Jodie Laubenberg, a North Texas Republican.

LeAnn Wallace / YNN

Less than a week after protesters and Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, ran the clock out on a tough new abortion bill, they were back Monday -- this time clad in orange.

But their opponents, too, returned for the start of the second legislative special session. And with an iron grip on the Capitol, Republicans vowed not to allow the bill to fail this time around.

Todd Wiseman / Texas Tribune

Abortion activists are expected to be front and center as the battle over abortion restrictions resumes in Austin today.

Gov. Rick Perry is blaming an unruly "mob" and a senator's filibuster for killing a bill this week that would have further restricted Texas abortions. 

The governor found a receptive audience for his message Thursday at the  National Right to Life Convention in Dallas. 

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