Last Thursday, Texas Right to Life achieved a victory toward protecting the right to free speech across the state, and particularly Pro-Life speech.
In 2014, during a hotly-contested Republican primary runoff election, Texas Right to Life aired radio ads clarifying the inconsistent anti-Life record of an incumbent senator who sponsored legislation dangerous to vulnerable patients in Texas hospitals. After he bullied the radio stations into withdrawing the ads, Texas Right to Life sued him for tortious interference with a contract.
In the trial court, the former senator argued that Texas Right to Life’s case should be dismissed, alleging his actions were privileged under a provision of state law known as the Texas Citizen’s Participation Act (TCPA). The TCPA is a tool intended to increase First Amendment rights of Texans, not diminish them as the former senator claimed.
Both the 152nd Harris County District Court and the First Court of Appeals agreed with Texas Right to Life that the lawsuit should not be dismissed.
“Texas Right to Life celebrates that, after two years, we are once again on the road to our day in court. Allowing well-funded incumbents and campaign consultants to silence critics by interfering with duly-executed contracts without consequences would wreak havoc on individuals and organizations engaging in political discourse. We are thankful Justices Bland and Huddle recognize the need to vet these issues through the judicial system,” said Texas Right to Life General Counsel, Emily Cook.
The Court’s opinion can be found here: http://tinyurl.com/z68wtlp