Planned Parenthood activist in Alaska fear a new innovative pro-life law in Texas may soon be headed north.
On Sept. 1, a Texas law took effect which effectively bans abortions after six weeks. Planned Parenthood has failed to block the law through the federal courts, which means Texas is set to become the first state to ban abortions on any baby that has a detectable heartbeat.
The new law requires abortionists to screen for a heartbeat and prohibits them from killing unborn babies if a heartbeat is detected. There are, however, exceptions for medical emergencies.
The unique law allows any private citizen to file civil lawsuits against any abortionist who violates the law. Punishments include a minimum $10,000 fine.
LifeSiteNews reported that the law does not allow Planned Parenthood to sue the state’s attorney general as they typically do to block pro-life laws, because “he has no role in enforcing the statute. They have to basically sit and wait to be sued.” Texas Right to Life (TRTL) has set up a website where concerned Texans can anonymously report abortionists who commit abortions even after finding a heartbeat or fail to test for one.
The pro-life law has Planned Parenthood affiliates in Alaska and across the country nervous. Jessica Cler, who heads up Planned Parenthood’s political activism in Alaska sent an Aug. 31 email to abortion supporters titled “Trouble in Texas could mean trouble in Alaska.”
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“Texas is about to implement the most extreme and hostile abortion ban in the country — and some extremist legislators want Alaska to be next,” Cler claimed. “We must come together to protect access to safe and legal abortion … We can’t let Alaska go the way of Texas.”
Planned Parenthood is the single largest provider of abortions in Alaska, and Cler called the Texas law the “most grave threat to abortion access and rights in 40 years.”
In Alaska, however, abortions are permitted for any reason, and the state even pays to underwrite elective abortions for low-income women. All Alaska laws attempting to curtail abortion have been struck down by the State Supreme Court.
Nevertheless, Cler noted that Planned Parenthood affiliates across the nation are taking to social media to express outrage over the Texas law, and to keep it from spreading to even more states.
Those who agree with the Texas law, however, can show their support by backing Texas Right to Life’s work to enforce the new law.