On Friday, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton joined a 22-state coalition in support of Alabama’s Dismemberment Abortion Ban. Paxton and the Louisiana-led coalition filed an amicus brief with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit urging them to uphold the law that prevents a barbaric and violent abortion procedure known as dismemberment abortion.
Paxton’s decisive defense of Alabama’s Dismemberment Abortion Ban comes the same week that the Texas Senate passed Senate Bill 415, Texas’s own Dismemberment Abortion Ban. The bill was approved preliminarily by the Senate in a bipartisan vote of 22-8. Senate Bill 415 and House Bill 844, like the Alabama law, outlaw the inhumane practice in which a preborn baby is killed by being torn limb from limb. The Dismemberment Abortion Ban is Texas Right to Life’s top legislative priority for the 85th Legislative Session.
In his support of the Alabama law, Paxton’s office iterates the legal basis for the Dismemberment Abortion Ban, stating:
The U.S. Supreme Court has held that states have an interest in protecting the inherent dignity of human life, including unborn life. Gruesome abortion practices, the 22-state coalition argues in its friend-of-the-court brief, may be regulated in the interest of fostering respect for human life and protecting the integrity of the medical profession.
Paxton’s robust defense of Alabama’s right to outlaw dismemberment abortions is an indication of his endorsement of Texas’s Dismemberment Abortion Ban currently before the legislature. The constitutionality of the law is well understood, and six other states have enacted similar legislation.
With a clear indication of the attorney general’s position, the Texas Legislature should waste no time in passing the Dismemberment Abortion Ban, which is an important legislative step in undermining the legal framework of Roe v. Wade. After the Texas Legislature successfully passed the Preborn Pain Act in 2013, which prohibits elective abortions after 20 weeks post-fertilization (a law that has not been struck down by a court, nor even challenged), the next logical step in the Pro-Life legal strategy is the Dismemberment Abortion Ban. Both measures solidify further the state’s interest in protecting fetal Life, reveal the humanity of the preborn child, and outlaw practices that are abhorrent and barbaric and have no place in Texas.