Texas’ Major Cities Push to Decriminalize Abortion

Two of Texas’ largest cities, Dallas and San Antonio, pushed resolutions Tuesday that would limit the use of city funds and staff from investigating or reporting illegal abortions. San Antonio City Council passed an anti-Life resolution to shield abortionists from consequence for committing illegal abortions. Meanwhile, a committee on the Dallas City Council moved the GRACE Act (Guarding the Right to Abortion Care for Everyone) forward but still requires a vote by the full council. These cities join Austin and Denton in their aim to give abortionists a free pass to continue killing preborn children in spite of state law. Luckily, however, Texas Right to Life has already found at least one solution to liberal cities’ anti-Life antics.

San Antonio’s resolution recommends that the city direct funds away from investigating illegal abortions, gives the Bexar County district attorney discretion to refuse to prosecute illegal abortion cases, and asserts the city’s intention to place “protection of reproductive rights” on its legislative agenda for the State of Texas’ upcoming legislative session.

Dallas City Council’s policy similarly would deprioritize investigations related to illegal abortions. The full city council will consider the resolution as early as August 10. 

Abortion became illegal last month in Texas when the state’s Pro-Life policies predating Roe v. Wade regained effect after the Supreme Court’s historic ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization. Current law can only be enforced by local authorities, but starting August 25, Texas’ “trigger ban” will allow the Texas attorney general to charge abortionists a $100,000 fine per illegal abortion. Currently, no abortion facility in the state is committing abortion.

Leftist local politicians proved time and again that they cannot be trusted to enforce our laws, and now they are adopting formal policies refusing to do so. Texas Right to Life is speaking with state lawmakers to pass a new bill in the next legislative session that would allow private citizens to sue abortionists who break state law, similar to the Texas Heartbeat Act. The possibility of a $10,000 citizen lawsuit for every illegal abortion was enough to prompt abortionists to stop killing preborn children in 2021 after they have a detectable heartbeat. 

Texas Right to Life Senior Legislative Associate Rebecca Parma added:

“Liberal local politicians want to give abortionists a free pass to continue killing preborn children. Every Pro-Life state will need private enforcement tools and other creative solutions to work around local elected officials who are bought and paid for by Planned Parenthood.”

This serves as an important reminder that the private enforcement mechanism, which made the Texas Heartbeat Act so successful, must be applied to all current and future Pro-Life laws.

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