Abortion debate continues on anniversary of Roe v. Wade ruling



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Posted on January 22, 2013 at 7:16 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jan 23 at 1:12 PM

AUSTIN, Texas -- Tuesday morning more than 100 people rallied on the south steps of the Texas State Capitol, including members of Planned Parenthood and NARAL Pro-Choice Texas. They commemorated the 40-year anniversary of the Supreme Court ruling of Roe versus Wade. 

State Rep. Donna Howard (D) of Austin spoke to the group, saying lawmakers should restore funding for family planning to reduce unintended pregnancies.

"In terms of eliminating it all together, I think that's an idealistic way of looking at it. As long as people have sex there will be unintended pregnancies, and there will be abortions, but what we want to do is make sure they are rare," said Howard.

Abortion remains a polarizing issue in Texas. Last legislative session, lawmakers approved  a measure requiring sonograms before deciding to undergo an abortion. This session, Governor Rick Perry wants to pass a law banning abortions after 20 weeks.

"Over the last decade you've seen pro-life legislation passed not because the people aren't for it, they've done it because the people are for it," said Governor Perry. 

Lawmakers will also consider a possible measure to crack down on abortion-inducing drugs. It would require physicians to personally administer the medication to pregnant women, even over multiple days.

"We are absolutely opposed to politicians making a decision about what's a safe, legal medical procedure. Those decisions should be made by women and their physicians," said Blake Rocap, legislative counsel for NARAL Pro-Choice Texas.

According to a new poll by the Pew Research Center, 63 percent of Americans believe that Roe v. Wade should not be overturned. Pew reports that it's a sentiment that has changed very little from surveys conducted back in 2003 and even in 1992.

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