Today, ahead of this afternoon’s special legislative session, thousands of Texans dressed in orange rallied in Austin, marching to the state capitol to support women’s rights, abortion, and Rep. Wendy Davis. Holding signs saying, “Proud of Texas, Ashamed of Rick Perry,” and “Payback is a bitch and she votes,” the estimated five thousand men and (mostly) women made their intentions clear: their lawmakers had better vote against one of the most anti-women, anti-abortion bills in the country.
Texas state Rep. Wendy Davis overnight became a household name after she stood on the Texas House floor last week for about a dozen hours, not leaning, sitting, drinking, eating, or using the restroom, but talking straight about only one issue — women’s reproductive rights — and all but one-hundred percent successfully filibustering the anti-abortion bill.
Now, after Republican shenanigans, Texas Governor Rick Perry has called a special 30-day legislative session and is demanding Republicans pass his bill, which would close all but five abortion clinics in the state of Texas, the second-largest and second-most populous state in the nation. The Lone Star State is home to 26 million Texans.
“Jose Orta from Taylor, Texas, came to protest the restrictive abortion bill. He said he thought it was important for men to get involved in the issue as well as women,” San Antonio Express news reports:
“I think men have to stand up as well for women’s rights. We have to stand to stand up for our daughters, sisters and mothers,” he said.
Orta said he didn’t like how men were making decisions and passing legislation controlling the bodies of women.
“We’re standing up to draconian rules,” he said. “I don’t want women to think that all men have that stance.”
Orta, originally from West Texas, said that he believes the bill would make it too hard for the women of West Texas to get abortions.
“It’s already hard to travel around in West Texas,” he said. “Adding this stress for the women in West Texas will just make it too hard.”
Orta said he was especially mad at the fact that Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst referred to those protesting last week as an “unruly mob.”
“This is the people’s house,” he said. “I can’t believe I’m 50 and we’re still doing this.”
Meanwhile, as Wendy Davis walked through the Capitol’s Rotunda, the crowds went wild.
Pro-choice supporters continue to chant.
“Not the church, not the state, women must decide their fate!”
“The people, united, will never be defeated!”
The Texas Senate was called to order at 2 PM local time, but quickly shut down, and won’t reconvene for another week, until next Monday, July 9, supposedly.
But who knows what tricks the Texas GOP has up their sleeves.
Here are photos from today’s amazing rally:
Image, top, by the Center for Reproductive Rights, via Twitter
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