Eight pro-abortion groups filed a lawsuit Tuesday against Texas because they want to start paying for women to travel out of state to abort their unborn babies again.
Dallas Morning News reports the abortion funds asked a federal judge to prohibit Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and local authorities from prosecuting their abortion work under a new state pro-life law.
The 2021 Human Life Protection Act, which is slated to go into effect Thursday, prohibits the killing of unborn babies in abortions and allows criminal charges to be filed against abortionists who violate the law. Exceptions are allowed if the mother’s life is at risk.
In the lawsuit, the abortion funds said they fear being prosecuted for assisting with murder under the new law, and those fears have caused a “chilling” effect on their abortion work. Abortion funds are nonprofits that provide money for travel, lodging, meals and other expenses to help women abort their unborn babies. Many also help women with the logistics of scheduling an abortion.
According to the Morning News, many Texas abortion funds stopped paying for abortions earlier this year in anticipation that the U.S. Supreme Court would overturn Roe v. Wade and Texas would ban all abortions.
In the lawsuit, they pointed to pro-life legislation that could retroactively apply to previous abortions that they assisted with funding.
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“Agents of the state of Texas contend that virtually every activity of those who assist pregnant Texans to understand their rights and medical options is now subject to criminal prosecution,” the lawsuit states, according to the Texas Tribune. “The threats have been repeated and far-ranging, and the intimidation has chilled helping professionals from providing counseling, financial, logistical, and even informational assistance to pregnant Texans who may need to access abortion care outside of the state.”
The groups also claimed their fear of prosecution violates their rights to free speech and travel.
They asked the judge to rule that the new law “cannot be enforced by any Defendant … in a manner that violates Plaintiffs’ rights to freely travel, freely associate, freely speak, and freely support members of their communities through financial assistance, as guaranteed by the United States Constitution and federal law.”
Parties in the lawsuit include Fund Texas Choice, the North Texas Equal Access Fund, the Lilith Fund for Reproductive Equity, Frontera Fund, The Afiya Center, West Fund, Jane’s Due Process, Clinic Access Support Network and abortionist Ghazaleh Moayedi, according to the report.
In 2021, while Roe still remained, Texas became the first state in nearly 50 years to enforce a heartbeat law and protect unborn babies from nearly all abortions. As a result, abortion facilities closed all across the state, and tens of thousands of unborn babies were spared from violent abortion deaths.
After the Supreme Court overturned Roe in June, Texas began enforcing its pre-Roe abortion ban, which was never repealed, to protect even more unborn babies from abortion. The law scheduled to go into effect Thursday adds criminal penalties, loss of medical license and other punishments for abortionists who kill unborn babies in violation of the law.
Meanwhile, pro-life Texans also have been passing laws and expanding support services to protect both women and babies, born and unborn.