Well, that's disappointing.
Wendy Davis, whose filibuster against new abortion restrictions in Texas made her a liberal hero and led her to run for governor this year, says in a new interview that she could, in fact, support a law that bans abortion after 20 weeks.Portions of her interview were published in the Dallas Morning News:
Davis said she could have supported a bill that contained only a 20-week ban, but the law's restrictions on clinics and doctors have greatly curtailed access to the procedure in parts of Texas.It appears that she's attempting to thread the needle, to retain the mantle of "liberal hero" but also to expand her appeal to more conservative voters. I don't think the strategy is a good one.
"It was the least objectionable," she said. "I would have and could have voted to allow that to go through, if I felt like we had tightly defined the ability for a woman and a doctor to be making this decision together and not have the Legislature get too deep in the weeds of how we would describe when that was appropriate."
UPDATE: Apparently a few Kossacks seem to think that I am distorting Davis' position, that her clarification about her stance is really not news at all.
She stated clearly to the Dallas Morning News (and I keep referring back to that paper because it was the original source of her comments) that her reason for filibustering the bill was primarily because it restricted the ability of clinics to operate--that such restrictions would place an unfair burden on those women who indeed were seeking such procedures. She did not filibuster because of the arbitrary cut-off; she did not filibuster because provisions for fetal abnormalities or life of the mother were lacking, for they were included.
If we were to split hairs, it would be on the language of "risk to the woman's life" as to "risk to the woman's health"--those distinctions were not included in the DMN article, to the detriment of the readership and to our elucidation.
However, why would Davis come out to clarify that she'd support a 20-week ban in the first place, when even she details precisely that fetuses at 20 weeks are generally not viable? Why would she say she was in support of that cut-off at all, even with caveats?
Who is she trying to woo with this softened stance?