Perry's tougher abortion stance: What does it mean for Texas?



Posted on December 28, 2011 at 6:49 PM

Gov. Rick Perry's "transformation" on his abortion stance is getting attention because of the potential impact in Texas.

Speaking in Iowa on Tuesday, Perry said he is now against abortion — even in cases of rape or incest — after watching a documentary called "Gift of Life."

He said he would still support the procedure to save a mother's life.

In Texas, the concern is how this could potentially affect abortion laws and issues in Texas next year if Perry doesn't make it to the White House.

With fresh polls showing Perry support lagging, the chances grow he'll be back at the Governor's Mansion for the 2012 legislative session.

His new outlook against abortions in cases of rape and incest heartens Texas pro-life groups.

"Certainly the belief that all children should be protected in the womb — regardless of the circumstances by which they came to be conceived — should be protected... is a position that we would support," said Becky Visosky of the Catholic Pro-Life Committee of North Texas.

Perry enjoys deep support among pro-life groups, and signed their favored sonogram bill into law earlier this year.

Providing the state wins an appeal overturning a court order blocking the law, pro-life groups look to tighten it further. They want to remove the law's exemption for women pregnant through rape and incest from hearing the doctor's explanation of the sonogram.

Perry didn't weigh in directly on that part of the law, but pro-life groups hope he would openly favor the change now.

"That really brings it home," Visnosky said. "That child in the womb is not responsible for the circumstances that brought them into existence, and they deserve the protections and the right to life just as much as you and I do."

Texas Alliance for Life has endorsed Perry, and the group's executive director, Joe Pojman, still hopes Perry can win the White House.

"We are interested next session in strengthening the sonogram law so that all women considering abortion will hear the description of the unborn child during the sonogram," Pojman said.

Pro-choice groups and many Democrats say they will keep fighting the sonogram law.

"This will probably lead to a law saying that if a 14-year-old victim of incest wants to get an abortion, she would then have to submit to a sonogram, which is one of the most invasive procedures this legislature has come up with," said Andy Brown, chairman of the Travis County Democratic Party.

Perry's campaign hasn't responded yet, but both sides in the sonogram law issue suspect they know what he'd support.

The state's appeal of an Austin federal judge's preliminary injunction of the law will be heard before the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals next Wednesday.

I was going to post this in the Texas Heathens group - but it's not up. So -- I thought it would be good here as well.

I live in Texas and hate to see what will happen here because of his anti-abortion stance - I am Pro-Choice.

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Replies to This Discussion

Joe Pojman of Texas Alliance for Life is an absolute fanatic-- I have seen him in action at the Texas Legislature. He and the rest of the Texas theocrats are very scary people.

Thankfully, Perry's long recent series of self-inflicted wounds will probably prevent him from being re-elected in Texas, much less winning the Republican nomination for the presidency.

I sure hope he doesn't get re-elected - especially now. Yeah I agree they are scary people.

Have you ever worked in a women's shelter? or a ranch for court ordered boys? or a prison system?  I have worked in all three.  

Imagine, if you will, a girl or woman seeking refuge from an abusive father, brother, uncle, or cousin and pregnant.  What chances does a girl or woman have to create a healthy, productive, happy life for herself?  Where does she find support if her family is dysfunctional? How can she possibly support and raise a child if she does not know how to take care of herself? 

Or imagine a boy ordered to a boys' ranch by the courts because he has raped his sister or his mother, or a neighbor girl. Where did he learn about sexuality?  Who are his male role models?  Perhaps his female role models have self-destructive behaviors? To whom does he turn for guidance? 

Or, a man in prison because of raping his daughter, or neighbor, or even his own wife.  What was his environment that factored into his development into an adult?  What influences enabled him to do the unspeakable? 

Imagine now, the child born of rape or incest.  Who knows what genetic codes came to him or her when rape or incest has occurred?  I don't believe genes cause one to be helpless or hopeless, or aggressive or criminal, these are learned behaviors; but what happens to a girl born because of a mother's rape or incest? What are the environmental factors that influence her development?  And what about the boy or man born of rape and incest?  What are the genetic and environmental factors that influence his life?  

Every child born that is a wanted child, a desired child, a deliberately conceived child has a probability of an advantage of healthy mind, body and character over a child born of rape or incest. 

Think carefully before wanting to "protect" the unborn, think about the conditions under which the conception took place and the long range impact on the individual so conceived, and the society that faces problems caused by criminal behavior of rape and incest. 

From my own experience, I tried for seven years to conceive and carry a child to full term, lost five pregnancies to natural miscarriage, adopted a son and when he was five-months 13-days old my twins were born. I wanted to be a mother, tried very hard to become one and then, when I had three under six months, I was absolutely overjoyed and loved parenting them.  Other problems confronted me, but my three children knew they were wanted and knew they were loved.  

What happens when a child is born knowing he or she was not planned, not wanted, and was the result of an unhealthy, often frightening, or criminal circumstance?

Think carefully before deciding how to protect an unborn child and how to protect the mother, and how to bring into the world children born of love and care.  

I am Pro-Choice and I agree with what your write -- it is a shame that Perry is the way he is -- I live in Texas and hate to see what will happen here because of his anti-abortion stance

Pro-choice groups and many Democrats say they will keep fighting the sonogram law.

I am fighting the sonogram law




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