Off the Kuff Rotating Header Image

Posts Tagged ‘abortion’

Smell ya later, Senate

How about that? The special legislative session is over — in one chamber, at least. The Texas House abruptly gaveled out Sine Die – the formal designation meaning the end of a session – on Tuesday evening after voting to approve the Senate’s version of a school finance bill that largely stripped provisions the chamber […]

More birth control by mail options

Good to see. “We want women to see us and say, ‘These are people who believe that if you want birth control you should have it,’” said Hans Ganeskar, co-founder and CEO of Nurx, a California-based site founded in 2015 that can both dispense and prescribe by way of computer or app. Nurx (pronounced New […]

Senate has mostly completed the Abbott special session agenda

I’m just going to hit the highlights here because this stuff is happening quickly and often late in the day, but most of the Abbott 20-point special session agenda has been turned into bills that have as of this morning passed the Senate. Yesterday’s action included vouchers and still more unconstitutional abortion restrictions, while the […]

Yet another lawsuit filed over yet another unconstitutional anti-abortion law

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. Texas is heading to court over a state law going into effect in September banning the most common second-trimester abortion procedure. The Center for Reproductive Rights and Planned Parenthood announced on Thursday they’re suing over a provision in Texas’ Senate Bill 8 bill that outlaws dilation and […]

State appeals injunction of “fetal remains” rule

Here we go. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton asked a federal appeals court Tuesday to overturn an Austin judge’s ruling that blocked the state from enforcing a rule requiring fetal tissue to be buried or cremated. U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks ruled in January that the regulation was vaguely worded, placing abortion clinics at risk […]

This session’s unconstitutional abortion bill passes

Here we go again. Texas senators voted Friday to send a bill banning the most common second-trimester abortion procedure and changing how health care facilities handle fetal remains to Gov. Greg Abbott’s desk. Under Senate Bill 8, which passed 22-9, health care facilities including hospitals and abortion clinics would be required to bury or cremate […]

It’s HB2 all over again

Here we go again. GOP House lawmakers took a sweeping approach to anti-abortion legislation on Friday, preliminarily passing a measure that would ban the most common form of a second-trimester procedure and change how health care providers dispose of fetal remains. Under the broad strokes of Senate Bill 8, abortion providers would have to bury […]

SB4 is what you get when you vote for Greg Abbott

This is me, shaking my head. Duque, who is Latina and Catholic, represents two constituencies Abbott courted during his campaign. The same constituencies strongly opposed the sanctuary cities ban, which Abbott made an emergency item in January and championed throughout the legislative session. Now, his crusade may have cost him the support of some Latinos […]

Bathroom bills and business interests

Texas Monthly’s Dave Mann reviews the Republican schism over the bathroom bill and comes to the same conclusion as I have. At the moment, the Legislature—and the Republican party, for that matter—has settled into an uneasy stalemate between Patrick’s right-leaning Senate and Straus’s more moderate coalition in the House. But, as they say, stalemates are […]

Winning the battles but losing the war

That’s the story of reproductive rights, and access to reproductive health care in general, in Texas. “We have made tremendous gains,” said Joe Pojman, executive director of the Texas Alliance for Life. He hopes that someday, perhaps under Trump, the Supreme Court will overturn the Roe v. Wade ruling upholding abortion rights. In the meantime, […]

House passes its budget

Mostly shenanigan-free, with a nice little side order of shade for a few people who deserve it. After 15 and a half hours of debate on hundreds of amendments to the Texas House budget, lawmakers in the lower chamber passed the two-year, $218 billion document, with 131 votes in favor and 16 votes against. The […]

Video fraudsters in trouble again

In California this time. California prosecutors on Tuesday charged two anti-abortion activists who made undercover videos of themselves trying to buy fetal tissue from Planned Parenthood with 15 felonies, saying they invaded the privacy of medical providers by filming without consent. The charges against David Daleiden and Sandra Merritt of the Center for Medical Progress […]

Busy day in the Senate

They got stuff done, I’ll give them that. Whether it was stuff worth doing or not, I’ll leave to you. 1. Senate bill would let Houston voters weigh in on fix to pension crisis. The Senate on Wednesday voted 21-10 to give preliminary approval of a bill that would require voters to sign off before […]

This is why you leave women’s health to the professionals

Because amateurs and zealots do a lousy job. In pushing a replacement for the Affordable Care Act that cuts off funds for Planned Parenthood, Republicans are out to reassure women who rely on the major health care organization that other clinics will step up to provide their low-cost breast exams, contraception and cancer screenings. Texas […]

The “Man’s Right To Know” Act

This is some high-quality trolling. Texas State Rep. Jessica Farrar, D-Houston, filed a bill Friday that would penalize men for “unregulated masturbatory emissions.” The satirical House Bill 4260 would encourage men to remain “fully abstinent” and only allow the “occasional masturbatory emissions inside health care and medical facilities,” which are described in the legislation as […]

House hears “fetal remains” bill

Seriously? [House Bill 35] would create a registry of organizations that can help pay for burial or cremation of fetal remains. That way, the cost associated with burials would not fall on women, [bill author Rep. Byron] Cook said. The measure would not apply to miscarriages that happen at home. “Let me be clear: this […]

Texas cannot bar Planned Parenthood from Medicaid

Good. U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks ruled Tuesday afternoon that Texas clinics affiliated with Planned Parenthood can continue to care for patients under the state’s Medicaid program, a phew-worthy victory for reproductive rights advocates and a loss for the state’s GOP leaders. In a 42-page ruling, Sparks wrote that the state’s arguments in the case […]

“Fetal remains” rule blocked

Good. U.S. District Court Judge Sam Sparks ruled Texas cannot require health providers to bury or cremate fetuses, delivering another blow to state leaders in the reproductive rights debate. On Friday afternoon, Sparks wrote in his ruling that Texas Department of State Health Services’ fetal remains burial rule’s vagueness, undue burden and potential for irreparable […]

Planned Parenthood still in Medicaid

For now, pending judgment. U.S. District Court Judge Sam Sparks on Thursday delayed Planned Parenthood’s ouster from the state’s Medicaid program until Feb. 21. […] During closing arguments Thursday hearing, attorneys from both sides cited clips from the video. Sparks said he wanted all involved to review the video footage and present their findings to […]

Here we go again with Planned Parenthood and Medicaid

Rooting for another injunction. Texas officials are back in federal court this week over abortion-related policy, this time to defend efforts to oust Planned Parenthood from Medicaid. Planned Parenthood has asked U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks to block the ouster as illegal, unjustified and unfair — an improperly political move that could deprive about 11,000 […]

“Fetal remains” rule still on hold

Take all the time you need. As he considers a final ruling on the state’s fetal remains burial rule, U.S. District Court Judge Sam Sparks is delaying the start date of the rule for at least another three weeks. On Wednesday afternoon, after attorneys for the state of Texas and the Center for Reproductive Rights […]

Back to court for Planned Parenthood

Here we go again. Planned Parenthood late Friday asked a federal judge in Austin to block plans by Texas officials to kick the organization out of Medicaid. Calling state plans “nothing more than a politically motivated witch hunt,” Planned Parenthood asked U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks to issue an injunction or temporary restraining order allowing […]

Texas follows through on threat to pull Medicaid funds from Planned Parenthood

More than a year after the initial threat was made. Clearly, you can’t rush these things. After more than a year of delays, Texas is officially kicking Planned Parenthood out of the state’s Medicaid program. In a move that could affect thousands of low-income women, state health officials on Tuesday delivered a final legal notice […]

The religious objection to the “fetal remains” rule

It may not be your religion, but who are we to tell people of sincere religious faith what to do? “The Satanic Temple believes burial rites are a well-established component of religious practice. In addition, members of The Satanic Temple believe in the inviolability of the body and, as such, these rules contradict our fundamental […]

“Fetal remains” rule put on hold

Good. A federal judge has delayed Texas’ fetal remains burial rule until Jan. 6. Judge Sam Sparks ruled Thursday afternoon that the Texas Department of State Health Services would have to push back its start date for requiring health providers to bury or cremate aborted fetuses. The agency had originally slated the rule to go […]

“Fetal remains” lawsuit filed

As expected. Today the Center for Reproductive Rights filed new litigation against the state of Texas over unconstitutional new regulations that mandate the burial or cremation of embryonic and fetal tissue that results from abortions, miscarriages, or ectopic pregnancy surgery – regardless of the woman’s personal wishes or beliefs. The politically-motivated rules are designed to […]

“Fetal remains” lawsuit in the works

Get ready. Health providers and abortion clinics have less than two weeks to figure out how to comply with Texas’ new fetal remains rules — that is, if a lawsuit doesn’t halt the process first. Amy Hagstrom Miller, founder of abortion provider Whole Woman’s Health, said she is working with the Center for Reproductive Rights […]

The latest abortion hysterics

Good grief. Women who are feeling pressured by their parents or partner to have an abortion are being advised by the state to pick up the phone and dial 911, according to a new pamphlet the state released Monday. The Combined Law Enforcement Associations of Texas is not pleased, saying such calls could impede the […]

The costs of the “fetal remains” rule

This is going to cost a lot of people a lot of money. State health officials have contended that the “minimum costs in complying with the rules” would total $450 a year per health care facility, arguing that those costs would be offset by the elimination of the cost of landfill disposition. But Michael Land, […]

“Fetal remains” rule goes into effect

Cue up that next lawsuit. Texas’ proposed rules requiring the cremation or burial of fetal remains will take effect Dec. 19, according to state health officials. Despite intense outcry from the medical community and reproductive rights advocates, the state will prohibit hospitals, abortion clinics and other health care facilities from disposing of fetal remains in […]

More on the Texas telemedicine lawsuit

Texas Monthly has a nice overview. Imagine you’re sick, or you think you might be sick, and you want to talk to a doctor. Instead of waiting a week or two to see your primary care physician, you just open an app on your phone or computer and within minutes you’re video-chatting with a doctor […]

The cost of defending HB2

It was quite expensive. Texas could be on the hook for more than $4.5 million as part of its failed legal battle to defend its 2013 abortion restrictions, which the U.S. Supreme struck down as unconstitutional in June. The Center for Reproductive Rights late Friday filed its request for that amount in attorney’s fees and […]

The next abortion lawsuit should be on its way

We were warned it would need to happen. Despite intense outcry from the medical community, reproductive rights advocates and funeral directors, Texas isn’t budging on a proposed rule to require the cremation or burial of fetal remains. Following an initial public comment period that sparked medical concerns and a legal threat, Texas health officials have […]

Auditor asked to investigate Heidi Group health care grant

Good. The left-leaning nonprofit Progress Texas is asking the state auditor’s office to investigate a $1.6 million state contract awarded to an anti-abortion group under the state’s new Healthy Texas Women program. […] The Heidi Group does not currently provide medical services or employ medical staff, but founder Carol Everett has said that her group […]