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Anti-abortion deposition requests generate fear, not results

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by By Eleanor Klibanoff, The – 2024-05-10 05:00:00

SUMMARY: Anti-abortion activist Jonathan Mitchell has filed several legal petitions in Texas, aiming to investigate those involved with facilitating abortions, including abortion funds and women who seek out-of-state procedures. Although judges have not approved these petitions, they have spurred fear and confusion. Mitchell was granted one petition to depose a woman who had an abortion out-of-state, but that ruling is on hold pending appeal. Legal experts argue that Texas abortion laws and federal protections for interstate travel make it unlikely for Mitchell's tactics to succeed. However, his method of incremental legal challenges aims to create uncertainty and exploit legal gray areas, using the fear of litigation to deter people from supporting or accessing abortion services.

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Rule 202 petitions

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Petitions filed against women

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Other petitions

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The Texas Tribune is a nonprofit, nonpartisan media organization that informs Texans — and engages with them — about public policy, politics, government and statewide issues.

Texas Tribune

Dade Phelan’s primary is last stand for Texas GOP old guard

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by By Jasper Scherer and Zach Despart, The – 2024-05-21 05:00:00

SUMMARY: Prominent Republican power brokers gathered at pipeline mogul Kelcy Warren's mansion to support GOP Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan against far-right factions. This group, including figures like Karl Rove and former governor Rick Perry, aims to counter hardline conservatives pulling the party further to the right. Phelan's runoff against David Covey has become costly and pivotal for the party's ideological future. Critics, such as state Rep. Steve Toth, argue Phelan's alliances hinder conservative progress. Opponents also contend Phelan mishandled issues like school vouchers and border security. The primary underscores the GOP's internal struggle between establishment and insurgent factions.

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Beaumont, Texas: David Covey talks on the phone in Beaumont on Friday, Jan 26, 2024. Covey is running against House Speaker Dade Phelan in the Republican primary.

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State Rep. Steve Toth, R-The Woodlands, asks Rep. Tom Oliverson, R-Cypress, to sign a bill on the House floor before budget discussions at the state Capitol on April 6, 2023.

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The old guard

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Former White House Deputy Chief of Staff and Republican political consultant Karl Rove speaks on a panel at The Texas Tribune Festival in Austin on Saturday, Sept. 24, 2022.

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Former Gov. Rick Perry attends a Get Out the Vote Rally in support of Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan on Thursday, February 29, 2024, in Vidor, Texas. Deep fissures within the Republican Party have placed Phelan as the No. 1 enemy of Texas' far-right conservatives.

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“Fire-breathing” conservatives

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Sandi Villarreal, deputy editor for digital at Texas Monthly, moderates a panel with US Rep. Henry Cuellar, D-Laredo, and former speaker of the Texas House Joe Straus at The Texas Tribune Festival on Sept. 24, 2022 in Austin, TX.

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“A fundamental shift”

House Democrats including Ron Reynolds, D-Missouri City, Rep. Trey Martinez Fischer and Rep. Gina Hinojosa, D-Austin, hold a press conference prior to the start of the 3rd-called special session of the 88th Legislature on October 92, 2023.

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House Speaker Dade Phelan listens to state Representatives on the House floor during Sine Die, the last day of the 88th Texas Legislative Session, at the Capitol in Austin on May 29, 2023.

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The Texas Tribune is a nonprofit, nonpartisan media organization that informs Texans — and engages with them — about public policy, politics, government and statewide issues.

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Texas Tribune

Texas Medical Board abortion guidance sparks pushback

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by By Eleanor Klibanoff, The – 2024-05-20 19:03:52

SUMMARY: Sarah Harrison testified before the Texas Medical Board to highlight the confusion surrounding Texas' abortion laws, after being advised to travel out of state for a selective reduction to terminate a nonviable twin. The board's guidance on abortion laws has been criticized for its lack of clarity, adding to the confusion doctors face regarding when they can perform abortions. Testimonies from various stakeholders, including doctors and lawyers, emphasized the need for clearer guidelines to prevent delays in emergency care. The board is considering testimony before its June meeting to potentially revise the guidance. The Texas Tribune seeks donations to support continued investigative journalism.

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Guidance pushback

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Weighing imminence

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The Texas Tribune is a nonprofit, nonpartisan media organization that informs Texans — and engages with them — about public policy, politics, government and statewide issues.

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Ted Cruz files bill to protect IVF

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by By Eleanor Klibanoff, The – 2024-05-20 09:45:47

SUMMARY: U.S. Senator Ted Cruz and Senator Katie Britt have introduced the IVF Protection Act to safeguard access to in vitro fertilization (IVF) amid changing anti-abortion laws. The bill aims to make states ineligible for Medicaid funding if they ban IVF. This legislative effort follows an Alabama Supreme Court ruling that classified embryos as protected human life, prompting some IVF providers to pause services. The Texas Supreme Court may also consider a case impacting IVF. Cruz, seeking reelection against Democrat Colin Allred, emphasizes IVF's importance for families. Texas Governor Greg Abbott supports clarifying state laws to protect IVF, while Senate Democrats and House Speaker Mike Johnson diverge on federal versus state jurisdiction.

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