The law, Senate Bill 4, prohibits doctors from providing drugs that induce abortion to women who are seven weeks or more pregnant. The bill was passed by the Texas state legislature in August and Mr Abbott quietly signed it on Friday, status registers spectacle.
The new law follows on from Senate Bill 8, a very restrictive abortion law that Mr Abbott signed with much more fanfare in May. The U.S. Supreme Court refused to block the law earlier this month, sparking outrage among pro-choice groups and a trial from the US Department of Justice.
SB 4 has so far avoided this kind of backlash. Mr Abbott did not hold any signing ceremonies, did not issue any press releases, and did not post any announcements on Twitter that he had signed the bill. Many news sources did not seem to notice that he had done so until this week.
Perhaps this is a fitting start for a law that women’s rights groups have called a “back door abortion ban.”
“Anti-choice politicians in Texas are launching their attacks on abortion access from every angle imaginable,” Adrienne Kimmel, director of NARAL Pro-Choice America, said in a statement. declaration. “This law blatantly violates the fundamental freedoms of Texans and further distances access to care.”
The independent has contacted Gov. Abbott’s office for comment, but has yet to receive a response.
SB 4 is expected to come into effect in December, when its violators can be fined up to $ 10,000 or jail time of up to two years.
Texas Republicans hailed SB 4 as a step towards “protecting life,” as one of the bill’s co-sponsors put it.
“I am proud to co-sponsor SB 4 to tackle unsafe mail-order abortions and increase reporting requirements for complications from all types of abortions,” said Will Metcalf, Texas State Representative . tweeted last month. ” I am proud [sic] to see this bill come to Governor Abbott’s desk! “