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Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said his state's controversial abortion legislation does not force rape victims to have their attackers' babies, responding to one of the main objections to the ban amid outcry from the Left.
Abbott said the bill does not force rape victims to have children because it provides approximately a six-week window in which to have an abortion or to take a morning after pill. He also emphasized the need to get rapists off the streets of Texas.
“Let’s be clear: Rape is a crime,” Abbott said at a press conference on Tuesday. “And Texas will work tirelessly to make sure that we eliminate all rapists from the streets of Texas by aggressively going out and arresting them and prosecuting them and getting them off the streets.”
The new law, Senate Bill 8, outlaws abortions after a fetal heart is detected, which is usually at about six weeks after conception. The legislation allows individuals to sue abortion clinics and those who help others get abortions, allowing private citizens to claim up to $10,000 for reporting abortions occurring after the six-week mark. Abbott signed the bill into law in May.
The Supreme Court ruled 5-4 on Thursday to deny an emergency appeal from abortion providers and others seeking to block enforcement of the law, which went into effect on Wednesday.
Critics of the law have slammed the Supreme Court's refusal to intervene, with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and President Joe Biden saying they will attempt to combat the state law at the federal level. On Thursday, the Department of Justice signaled it will step up legal challenges to the law through enforcement of a 27-year-old law that prohibits physical obstruction of those seeking abortions or reproductive healthcare services.
Private companies have also come out against the legislation. Uber and Lyft vowed to supplement legal fees for drivers sued for transporting women to abortion clinics, and dating apps such as Bumble and Tinder have pledged to help fundraising efforts to get Texans access to abortion services out of state.
Two in 5 Texas women have been sexually assaulted, and 6.3 million Texans have experienced sexual assault, according to Denton County Friends of the Family, a shelter for those affected by rape, sexual abuse, and domestic violence.
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Original Author: Misty Severi