The Texas Heartbeat Bill – What You Need to Know
The Texas Heartbeat Bill (SB 8) – What You Need To Know
• The heartbeat is a key and universal medical predictor of whether human life exists.
• The Texas Heartbeat bill bans abortions when a human baby’s life is detected in the womb by a heartbeat, while current Texas law allow for abortions as late as 20 weeks.
• The Texas Heartbeat bill penalizes physicians from performing or inducing an abortion once a heartbeat is detected.
• The Texas Heartbeat bill rejects the Roe v. Wade decision by acknowledging that Pre-Roe state laws in Texas that ban abortions are still valid and enforceable. The Texas Penal Code of 1925 addressed abortion with statutes that prohibited and criminalized abortion. In, 1973, the same year as Roe v. Wade, the Legislature overhauled the Penal Code. Lots of statutes were repealed or moved, but the abortion statutes were never repealed. The Heartbeat bill references these states and acknowledges they could still be enforced.
• The Texas Heartbeat bill relies on civil enforcement of the law by citizens, making it virtually impossible for a court to strike down the law as “unconstitutional.” In order for there to be a constitutional violation (such as a so-called “right to an abortion”), the government has to be the one enforcing such a law and taking such right away from a person.
• The Texas Heartbeat bill is different than heartbeat laws in other state that have been struck down, as it allows any person the ability to sue abortion providers for violating this law.
• There is some opposition to the Heartbeat bill, but it comes from those who profit off of abortion and benefit from the taking of human life.
• Since 2013 Arkansas, Georgia, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, and mostly recently Idaho and Oklahoma, have all passed heartbeat bills in their state legislatures.
• Key groups supporting the Texas Heartbeat Bill: Texas Values, Human Coalition Action, Family Policy Alliance, Concerned Women for America (CWA) Texas, Texas Right to Life, Janet Porter (Faith 2 Action), Chairman Allen West (RPT), SBA List, Texas Eagle Forum, ACLJ, Texas Teens for Life, Fredericksburg Tea Party, Texas Young Republicans, Baylor Bears for Life/Students for Life Action, Texas Pastor Council, Texas Faith & Freedom Coalition, Ethics and Religious Liberty Committee of SBTC.
• Key pro-life leaders supporting the Texas Heartbeat Bill: Abby Johnson, Gov. Greg Abbott, Ann Hettinger, Lauren Muzyka, Jason Jones, Kelly Shackelford, Janet Porter, Jonathan Saenz, Walter Weber, Pastor Frank Pomeroy, Tim Von Dohlen, Karen Garnett, Pastor Dave Welch, Jessica Colon, Tim Lambert.
• Texas Values has a long history of crafting and passing pro-life legislation. Our President Jonathan Saenz was the lawyer for Gianna Jessen, a woman survived an abortion. He also legally represented a pregnancy pro-life center and won a legal battle against a law school over his pro-life student organization when he was just a law student.