Austin, TX

Texas Governor Greg Abbott Quietly Passes SB 4 and This is What You Need to Know

Tom Handy

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Texas Governor Greg Abbott Sign Another BillPhoto by Heather Mount on Unsplash

Last week, Governor Greg Abbott signed a new bill in Austin that adds more restrictions and increases penalties to those doctors using abortion-inducing medication. The new bill, Senate Bill 4 (SB 4), prevents physicians or providers from giving women abortion-inducing drugs after seven weeks of pregnancy. The Food and Drug Administration requirement was 10 weeks.

Along with the bill are fines and jail time. Anyone who violates SB 4 "intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly" commits a state jail felony. This includes jail time between 180 days and two years and a fine of up to $10,000 according to the Dallas Morning News.

The law forbids receiving abortion medication from out of state. Those who send the medication are also subject to this criminal penalty.

SB 4 goes into effect on December 2 this year.

Anti-choice politicians have made their intentions abundantly clear, and they will stop at nothing to strip away reproductive freedom,” said the acting president of NARAL Pro-Choice America Adrienne Kimmel, in a statement following Friday’s bill signing.
She added Governor Abbott “blatantly tramples on Texans’ fundamental freedoms and pushes access to care further out of reach.” “Anti-choice politicians have made their intentions abundantly clear, and they will stop at nothing to strip away reproductive freedom.”

SB 4 comes after the recently approved SB 8 which prevents abortion for women.

SB 8 prohibits abortions after a fetal cardiac activity is detected in a women

The passage of SB 4 comes weeks after SB 8 went into effect, prohibiting abortions after the fetal cardiac activity is detected. Many pregnant women will not even know they are pregnant at this point.

The law also awards a fine to individuals to sue anyone suspected of helping a woman obtain an abortion. If successful, they can be awarded at least $10,000.

Opponents of the abortion bill

Hear some other thoughts from women in Texas.

"Anti-choice politicians have made their intentions abundantly clear, and they will stop at nothing to strip away reproductive freedom," Adrienne Kimmell, acting president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, told the Dallas Morning News.

Texas State Senator Eddie Lucio Jr. doesn’t state his response directly but you can read between the lines based on what he said.

"Doctors need to be present when patients receive these drugs so the patient knows what to expect from normal side effects and what needs to be addressed quickly before it turns into a serious issue," Lucio said in his layout of the bill during a Senate committee hearing.

What do you think about the abortion laws passed?

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