Texas lawmakers seek to do opposite of NY, end late-term abortions
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Texas lawmakers seek to do opposite of NY, end late-term abortions

Texas, abortion

As some states make news for for expanding late-term abortion, like New York, Texas leaders have introduced legislation to ensure the opposite. Texas Right to Life reports that Senator Kelly Hancock (R-North Richland Hills) and Representative Matt Schaefer (R-Tyler) filed the Preborn NonDiscrimination Act (PreNDA). These bills (Senate Bill 1033 and House Bill 2434) would both provide for care for the mother and her preborn child through a life-threatening prenatal diagnosis, as well as eliminating the remaining legal late-term abortions in Texas, in deliberate response to laws that seek to expand the killing of preborn babies, potentially until term, in New York and Virginia. The act states:

(1) Texas has a compelling state interest in protecting all Texans from discrimination based on sex, race, and disability; and(2)  Texas enforces prohibitions against discrimination based on sex, race, and disability in various areas,including housing, employment, education, insurance, and health program and service provision

The first part listed in the PreNDA will amend Chapter 161 of the Health and Safety Code by adding “subchapter X. PERINATAL PALLIATIVE CARE.” This section amendment focuses on care for the pregnant woman and her preborn baby, noting that “a pregnant woman who receives a diagnosis of a life-threatening disability of the woman’s preborn child is informed of the availability of perinatal palliative care.” This section outlines this care, as well:

Perinatal care means the provision of comprehensive, supportive care to reduce the suffering of a pregnant woman, her preborn child, and her family, from diagnosis of the preborn child’s life-threatening disability through the delivery and possible death of the child as a result of the life-threatening disability. The term includes medical, social, and mental health care, including counseling and health care provided by maternal-fetal medical specialists, obstetricians, neonatologists, anesthesia specialists, specialty nurses, clergy, social workers, and other individuals focused on alleviating fear and pain and ensuring the pregnant woman, her preborn child, and her family experience a supportive environment.

The next section of the PreNDA will amend Chapter 170 of the Health and Safety Code “by designating Sections 170.001 and 170.002 as Subchapter A and adding a subchapter heading to read as follows: SUBCHAPTER A. GENERAL PROVISIONS; POST-VIABILITY ABORTION PROHIBITED.”

It also prohibits discriminatory abortion in very direct language:

READ: Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals: Planned Parenthood videos aren’t deceptive, Texas can defund

Additionally, the act states that “a person may not intentionally or knowingly perform an abortion on a woman who is pregnant with a viable preborn [unborn] child during the third trimester of the pregnancy.” There is only one exception, and that exception is for a “medical emergency,” which requires a certification from the person committing the abortion. Violations of the act can result in criminal penalties for those involved in the committing of the abortion who are in violation of the law, but not for the woman having the abortion. However, abortion — the direct and intentional killing of a human being in the womb — is never truly medically necessary.

 

In response to the filings, Elizabeth Graham, Director of Texas Right to Life, said: “… Preborn children deserve protection from late-term abortions and deadly discrimination. New York and Virginia do not speak for the rest of the nation, and this is an appropriate step to affirming the Right to Life of all preborn children….”

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