President of Planned Parenthood Leana Wen speaks during a protest against abortion bans, Tuesday, May 21, 2019, outside the Supreme Court in Washington. A coalition of dozens of groups held a National Day of Action to Stop the Bans, with other events planned throughout the week. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) — partnered with other abortion groups — has filed suit against Texas in light of Republican Gov. Greg Abbott’s declaration that abortion is “non-essential.”
Due to the pronouncement — amid a coronavirus clampdown — the procedure’s 86’d.
As reported by Fox News, the measure was part of Greg’s executive order intended to “[conserve] medical equipment and the capacity of the health care system.”
And why? Because healthcare professionals have warned that “patients sick with the coronavirus might overwhelm hospital capacity and deplete supplies, such as personal protective equipment for doctors and nurses.”
— Gov. Greg Abbott (@GovAbbott) March 22, 2020
Those against the ban and for abortion contend it’s keeping women from essential services.
PPFA CEO Alexis McGill-Johnson believes it’s all about shameful exploitation:
“Gov. Abbott and anti-abortion activists nationwide are forcing a legal and political fight in the middle of a public health crisis. Elected leaders are expending valuable time and resources exploiting a global pandemic to score political points instead of rallying to respond to this crisis.”
Planned Parenthood’s teamed up with the Center for Reproductive Rights.
As per CRR CEO Nancy Northrop, the whole thing’s an issue of health and life:
“Abortion care is time-sensitive and essential health care that has a profound impact on a person’s health and life, which is why it is protected as a constitutional right. Texas is abusing the state’s emergency powers and we are filing suit today to stop it.”
Also in alliance for the suit: the Lawyering Project, which, according its official mission statement, is committed to eliminating harm:
Laws that undermine reproductive rights deprive people of moral agency, rob us of control over our bodies, and compound other forms of oppression like racism, sexism, and poverty. Our mission is to eliminate these laws and the harmful impacts they have on people’s lives.
.@GovAbbott doesn't think abortion is essential or, apparently, time-sensitive.
— Planned Parenthood (@PPFA) March 25, 2020
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has a significantly different view:
“It is unconscionable that abortion providers are fighting against the health of Texans and withholding desperately needed supplies and personal protective equipment in favor of a procedure that they refer to as a ‘choice.’”
It is unconscionable that abortion providers are fighting against the health of Texans and withholding desperately needed supplies and
personal protective equipment in favor of a procedure that they refer to as a ‘choice.’
— Ken Paxton (@KenPaxtonTX) March 26, 2020
The state’s serious about its ban:
We must work together as Texans to stop the spread of COVID-19 & ensure that our health care professionals & facilities have all the resources they need to fight the virus.
— Texas Attorney General (@TXAG) March 23, 2020
Sounds like they’re not gonna budge.
Therefore, as stated by The Texas Tribune, until April 21st (the order’s expiration), abortions will be prohibited “unless the mother’s life is in danger.”
As for the application of pandemic considerations related to bringing pregnant women into clinics — where a virus ravaging the respiratory system is concerned — there may also be another factor to consider.
[T]he CDC lists pregnant women among the at-risk populations who should be vaccinated against seasonal influenza. They emphasize that pregnant women are particularly susceptible for flu-related complications such as pneumonia.
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