Failed Texas bill would have allowed death penalty in abortion cases

AUSTIN, Texas (KTRK) -- A failed Texas bill would have banned abortion and charged women who have abortions with homicide, which can carry the death penalty.

Members of the House of Representatives considered the bill, but it had no chance of progressing after the Republican chairman of the committee declared his opposition on Wednesday.

The bill would have allowed women who got an abortion or doctors who performed one to be charged.

It would have allowed no exceptions for abortions in cases of rape or when the health of the mother is at risk.

Jeff Leach, the Texas state representative who allowed a hearing on the bill in the Committee on Judiciary and Civil Jurisprudence, said in a statement posted on Twitter Wednesday that although he ardently identifies as "pro-life," he believed this legislation would move the cause in the "wrong direction."

Representative Jessica Farrar, the Democratic vice chairwoman of the committee, said in a phone interview on Wednesday that she saw the legislation as a "scare tactic" to dissuade doctors from providing abortion services.

Farrar said the text of the bill showed a clear intention to contradict Roe v. Wade, which established a constitutional right to abortion.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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