In a stunning turn of events early today, Republican leaders in the Texas Senate conceded early today that hotly contested abortion legislation was not approved as they had earlier claimed.
The bill, expected to be debated all over again in another special legislative session, would ban abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy and require that all procedures take place in a surgical center. The bill that was a top priority for Republican legislative leaders, and experts estimate it could lead to the closing of 37 of the state’s 42 abortion clinics.
In a chaotic scene that captivated national attention, a filibuster by Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, designed to derail the abortion bill was itself thwarted a couple hours short of her midnight goal late Tuesday.
Her effort appeared initially to succeed anyway because Davis and her fellow Democrats were still able to gum up the works in the Texas Senate with parliamentary debate until the clock struck midnight. That’s when the 30-day special legislative session was supposed to end.
However, Republicans insist that they began a vote on the abortion bill just before midnight and it passed.
Democrats contend the vote was not final before midnight, and therefore should not be allowed to stand. They vowed a legal fight to overturn it.
Finally, around 3 a.m., senators emerged from a closed-door meeting to announce that Republican leaders agree the bill was not passed in accordance with Senate rules.
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst explained briefly in a prepared statement that the bill will not be forwarded to the governor, who was prepared to sign it. “It’s been fun, but see you soon,” Dewhurst said.”
The Fort Worth Star-Telegram, "Abortion Bill Defeated After Texas Republicans Concede Vote Came Too Late."
"It’s been fun," says the male Republican lieutenant governor about he and his GOP buddies fucking around with critically important women’s health issues.