Federal District Judge Lee Yeakel, who historically rules in favor of the abortion industry, issues a sweeping ruling that strikes down the Pro-Life Texas Dismemberment Abortion Ban. The full five-day trial on the ban was held earlier this month after abortion providers resorted to the courts to protect their practice of ripping children limb from limb out of their mothers’ wombs.
State Senator Charles Perry (R-Lubbock) and State Representative Stephanie Klick (R-Fort Worth) sponsored the widely-supported legislation during the 85th Legislature with Texas Right to Life spearheading the passage of the ban. This Dismemberment Abortion Ban narrowly addresses one type of second-trimester abortion procedure in which a living preborn child is torn limb from limb while his or her heart is still beating. After the measure passed as an amendment to another related bill, several Texas abortion clinics and a few abortionists challenged the Pro-Life law claiming the measure created an undue burden on abortion providers and women seeking abortions and was, therefore, unconstitutional.
During the trial, the state’s attorneys, who defended the ban, focused on the humanity of the preborn child and the gruesomeness of dismemberment abortion through the testimony of abortionists, former abortionists, physicians, legal experts, bioethicists, public health experts, and others. Medical experts undermined claims by the abortion clinic representatives who argued they were entirely unable to comply with law and lacked the training to avoid criminal conduct. Plaintiffs lamented that the ban restricts the practice of abortion to other less safe procedures.
In closing arguments, the state’s legal team argued that the state interest in protecting preborn Life is identical to the legal basis for the Supreme Court’s 2007 ruling in Gonzales v. Carhart that upheld a ban on partial-birth abortion. Underscoring the brutality of the procedure, the attorney noted the “dark irony if the same Constitution that requires humane execution of criminals is the same Constitution that bars Texans from banning live dismemberment of an unborn child.”
Although Yeakel’s ruling to strike down the Dismemberment Abortion Ban is an undeniable roadblock to justice for preborn Texans, the Office of the Attorney General plans to immediately appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit Court, where Pro-Life legislation typically receives a fair assessment. John Seago, Legislative Director for Texas Right to Life, commented on the ruling and inevitable appeal:
Yeakel has made his abortion views known over the last few years when the abortion industry resorts to his favorable court to challenge Pro-Life laws. Regrettably, Yeakel again refused to recognize the compelling interest of the state of Texas in protecting women and preborn life from the barbarism of dismemberment abortion. His judicial activism has jeopardized the health and safety of women for far too long.