Lubbock lawmakers sued over heartbeat bill

Rep. Burrows and Sen. Perry also say they’ve received “credible” death threats due to their involvement
Published: Sep. 23, 2021 at 10:44 PM CDT|Updated: Sep. 23, 2021 at 10:46 PM CDT
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LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - The legal challenges continue to mount against Texas’ newest law that bans abortions after six weeks.

On Thursday, both Rep. Dustin Burrows (R-Lubbock) and Sen. Charles Perry (R-Lubbock) received official notice of 13 lawsuits filed in a Travis County district court. They’ve been named as defendants, alongside the state of Texas, Gov. Abbott, the pro-life group Texas Right to Life and a bi-partisan group of 20 other state lawmakers that had a hand in crafting Senate Bill 8.

The plaintiffs include several abortion fund groups and a few individuals, including at least one OB-GYN.

Rep. Burrows released the following statement in response:

“As a joint-author of the Heartbeat Bill, I am proud of the State of Texas for protecting those without a voice - the unborn - and I remain undeterred in standing up for every heartbeat. I welcome the disdain of those who gleefully encourage abortion - I will wear their scorn towards me as a badge of honor.”

Sen. Perry also said:

“ I am unapologetic in my defense of the unborn. Death threats and lawsuits will not deter me. May God have mercy on those advocating for the taking of an innocent life.”

In one of the lawsuits, obtained by KCBD news, the primary plaintiff is the Lilith Fund for Reproductive Equity.

It is a non-profit based in Austin that helps women afford abortion costs.

It’s argument is that the defendants have frustrated the organization’s mission and have caused injury forcing it to divert resources to counteract the threat of civil liability created by SB 8.

The lawsuit is also asking a Travis County judge for a mandatory injunction.

It was filed on August 31st, right before the bill took effect.

Jennifer Ecklund, who represents the plaintiffs, released the following statement:

“The Plaintiffs in all of these cases are saddened that Texas Legislators purposely devised a law to try to circumvent their constitutional rights by avoiding the Judicial Branch entirely. As Americans and Texans, we should be better than that. While these lawsuits have been on file for several weeks now, Plaintiffs look forward to the courts’ analysis of whether SB8 is constitutional, and are hopeful that lawmakers don’t continue to disregard the Constitution in the next special session.”

The earliest hearing date is scheduled for Monday, Oct. 4.

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