Marathon speech helps Democrats block Texas abortion bill

By REUTERS
June 26, 2013 14:25

AUSTIN, Texas - Texas state Democrats blocked a drive for new abortion restrictions on Wednesday after a marathon speech in the capitol in Austin caused some Republican backers of the bill to cast votes after a midnight deadline.

Democrat Senator Wendy Davis spoke for more than 10 hours in a bid to pull down the voting window on a measure that would place a ban on abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.

Her filibuster attempt stalled about two hours short of the deadline over a complaint that she violated rules, and the Republican-controlled Senate then began voting on the bill to cries of protests from spectators.

Republicans said they met the deadline but Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst, after meeting with lawmakers, said some of their votes came in after midnight, the effective close for the 30-day special session.


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