The Texas Senate Committee on State Affairs heard testimony today on three Pro-Life Priority Bills: the Texas Heartbeat Act (SB 8) by Senator Bryan Hughes, the Preborn NonDiscrimination Act (SB 1173) by Senator Kelly Hancock, and the Texas Abolition Strategy (SB 1647) by Senator Charles Perry. These measures would each stop abortion, draw attention to the humanity of the preborn child, and undermine the flawed foundation of Roe v. Wade. As chair of the committee, Senator Hughes scheduled a record number of Pro-Life bills to be considered.
Misty Tate, Jenny Drude, and Aly Fish are among the many Pro-Life Texans who shared their moving personal stories in support of the Pro-Life Priority Bills at the state Capitol.
Misty Tate testified in support of the Heartbeat Act (SB 8), which would prohibit abortions after the child’s heartbeat is detectable. Misty is a registered sonographer who since 2004 has aided mothers, helping them see their beautiful preborn children before they are born. During her testimony Misty placed her phone by the microphone and played a recording of a six-week-old baby’s heartbeat and a recording of a preborn baby who is over 20 weeks old. Misty asked the senators, “When you hear these heartbeats, can you tell the difference? Why is one of these heartbeats protected while the other is not?”
Jenny Drude followed, speaking in support of the Preborn NonDiscrimination Act (SB 1173). PreNDA would prohibit abortions committed for discriminatory reasons such as the preborn child’s race, gender, or disability. Jenny is a mother of six, three of whom are in heaven. When Jenny received the life-limiting diagnoses for her daughters, doctors pressured her to abort. She lovingly carried each child to term and explained that the moments spent with her babies, no matter how short, were the best of her life. Since then, Jenny ministered to families in similar situations as a newborn photographer. Mothers like Jenny are at peace knowing they loved and cared for their children until their last moments.
Aly Fish, mother and U.S. Army veteran, testified in support of the Texas Abolition Strategy (SB 1647), a Pro-Life omnibus bill which seeks to overturn Roe v. Wade and end all elective abortions in Texas. Aly shared how she, too, was told her baby would not live long after birth and was pressured to abort due to the genetic disorder. Thankfully, her daughter is alive today, and Aly held the one-year-old in her arms as she shared her story with the committee.
With so many heart-wrenching yet courageous stories, the members of the committee responded with compassion and warmth, welcoming and thanking all witnesses for sharing their experiences. Senator Hughes, a consistent Texas Right to Life honoree, set the tone for the hearing with this grace and diplomacy in conversing with the witnesses, even those who disagreed with the Pro-Life bills.
The brave testimony of the Pro-Life witnesses and the attention of the committee members shed light on the great need for these Pro-Life bills to be passed by the Texas Legislature. We applaud Senators Hughes, Perry, and Hancock for carrying the life-saving policies and thank Senator Hughes for spending the entire day at the hearing. We look forward to the committee voting out the Pro-Life Priority Bills soon and receiving a vote by the full Senate.