On the RecordRSS
As in the Old West, Texas is having a showdown, but ironically, ‘guns’ are not involved.
It started many years ago with the landmark case of Roe v. Wade. Rooted in Texas, abortion rights became a reality, not just for the Texas woman who wanted her own reproductive rights, but for all women in the United States. From then on, choice became the new word around town. That was 1973. Fast forward to today and reproductive choice is under attack and constantly being threatened by the conservative lawmakers of the same state from where it originated in giving women a right to choose.
Since the implementation of SB5 and HB2, Republican Texas lawmaker’s are preventing access to safe, legal abortion for women of their state, especially those west of I-35 and in rural communities. It has forced the shutdown of almost all clinics in Texas, particularly west of I-35 where no access to abortion exist.
A brief timeline of reproductive freedom for women:
1970 – Norma McCorvey (Jane Roe) commences a federal action against District Attorney of Dallas County, Henry Wade.
1973 – January 22, by a decision of 7-2, the Supreme Court ruled that restricting access to abortion is unconstitutional.
(20 relatively happy years)
1992 – Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey, a case which upheld a woman’s right to have an abortion “prior to fetal viability,” but rejected the definition of “trimester” as written in Roe to allow for a more flexible definition of fetal viability.
2006 – November 8, Gonzales v. Carhart, which upheld a 2003 ban on partial births, even though no exception was made for a woman’s health, despite it being a well-established legal precedent. This paved the way for many of the restrictive abortion laws being created today in places like Texas.
Now, on the 41st anniversary of Roe v. Wade, women in our “red state” are having to resort to practices similar to those women were forced to use pre-Roe v. Wade days. The undue burden women face along our border communities include traveling over 250 miles to the nearest clinic able to perform abortions, having to get through border patrol checkpoints, if they can, and in some cases being forced to self-induce. The drug commonly used and found in area flea markets is Misoprostol, which according to the warning label, must never be used when pregnant because it causes induced abortion past eight weeks. This is what women have been FORCED to do thanks to HB2 provisions not expanding Medicaid, not providing for prenatal care or childcare. The idea that many of these woman will have no other alternative other than to carry a child to term and then be ignored is unconscionable.
The truth is, as long as Texas is a “red state” with all its logic, women’s reproductive rights will remain this way. As long as Texas continues to ignore the needs of women’s health, women will die. Texas must begin the process of turning Texas blue, beginning with electing Wendy Davis and Leticia Van de Putte. We need to continue this blue wave into 2016, 2018 and 2020. It took time to send women backwards, now it will take time to propel women forward, again.
-Christine Boswell, Intern
Travis County Democratic Party
Message from the ChairRSS
Dear Travis County Democrat,
Thank you for participating in the Democratic Primary. You proved that not even an ice storm could prevent us from exercising our fundamental right to vote.
We want to congratulate those who won yesterday’s Democratic Primary and thank them for their service to our party and our community. We are proud of and appreciative for all of our terrific candidates, including those who were not successful, for offering themselves up for public service and doing the difficult work of running a contested race. It takes a lot of courage and stamina to run, but the outreach to Democratic voters and voter engagement resulting from these contests made our party stronger.
Now is the time to unite as Democrats and do everything we can to ensure that we keep Travis County deep blue and help increase turnout for our statewide slate. We’re excited that Senators Wendy Davis and Leticia Van de Putte are now our official candidates for Governor and Lt. Governor, and we are preparing for the most successful Travis County Democratic Coordinated Campaign ever, working to create the high Democratic voter turnout in this county that will lead to victory for all of our candidates, from Senators Davis and Van de Putte, Diane Henson for Chief Justice of the Third Court of Appeals, to Randall Slagle for J.P. — but we need your help.
There will be a runoff for Democratic U.S. Senate and Agriculture Commissioner candidates on Tuesday, May 27th. It is extremely important that we turn out for this election and ensure that we nominate David Alameel as our U.S. Senate candidate, rather than LaRouche candidate Kesha Rogers, who has called for President Obama’s impeachment, and that we make a thoughtful choice between Ag Commissioner candidates Kinky Friedman and Jim Hogan.
This year, Democratic Precinct Conventions were not held after the polls closed on March 4th. Instead, the Democratic Precinct Conventions will be held during the first part of the Democratic County Convention on Saturday, March 22, at the Palmer Event Center, 900 Barton Springs Rd., in Austin.
The County Convention is a great time to meet your Democratic neighbors, hear from our terrific Democratic nominees, sign up to get involved in the Coordinated Campaign to ensure our victory in November, discuss important party business, develop our party’s positions on various issues, and elect delegates to go on to the Texas Democratic Convention in Dallas on June 27-28. Registration will begin at 8 a.m. and the convention will be called to order at 10 a.m. on March 22. You may preregister now here.
We are still recruiting County Convention committee members from all four Senate Districts that cover parts of Travis County, and we particularly need more women as well as more people from Senate Districts 21 and 24. If you would like to serve, please contact our office at 512-477-7500, and indicate on which of the following committees you are willing to serve: Nominations, Credentials, Rules and Procedures, or Resolutions.
A list of the Democratic nominees who will appear on your November 4th ballot are listed on our website here.
If you have any questions about our plans for the general election or if you want to get involved, please contact our office at 512-477-7500, or info@TravisCountyDemocrats.org. And please be sure to thank all of our Democratic candidates next time you see them; they personally sacrificed to perform a great service to our party!
Jan Soifer, Chairwoman Travis County Democratic Party