April 23, 2024

The anti-abortion movement in Texas has adjusted course—and it’s headed toward putting abortion and IVF patients on death row.

Leaked video footage of an Abolish Abortion Texas function shows Hood County Republican Party officials in attendance at a meeting supporting the death penalty for women and minors who seek out either procedure. The meeting took place in January, but the video was only shared to X (formerly Twitter) last week.

“There’s no difference in the value of born people and preborn people,” said Paul Brown, the group’s director. “In short, abortion is murder. And that’s starting at the moment of fertilization even prior to implantation. So that Plan B pill, or what’s known as the morning-after pill, which is used to terminate or kill a baby prior to implantation, that is an abortion.”

This is false. Emergency contraception such as Plan B prevents fertilization from occurring.

“Other forms of abortion in this category include what happens in IVF, when a fertilized egg is created and is oftentimes destroyed,” Brown continued. “Those that do are terminating or destroying human life.”

Brown also added that abortions provided for victims of incest or rape will “never be OK,” noting in his speech that “[women’s] lives don’t matter any more than the babies’ they are killing.”

Hood County Constable Scott London, Hood County GOP Chair Steve Biggers, and Hood County GOP chair candidate Greg Harrell attended the meeting, but many more GOP hopefuls have signed a pledge with the anti-abortion group and received its endorsement. That includes state Representative Jay Dean and former Texas House Speaker Tom Craddick, as well as more than a dozen Texas state House candidates.

“The fact that Texas Republicans are meeting with people willing to send pregnant women and doctors to Death Row should terrify every person in Texas. Make no mistake: Texas Republicans will strip women of their basic healthcare rights and will not stop at just banning abortion,” said Texas Democratic Party Chair Gilberto Hinojosa in a statement.

“They will punish women and doctors for seeking and performing basic health care, they will ban IVF and they will create a hostile and inhumane state. All of these candidates should be ashamed of themselves. This isn’t Texas, but this is the Republican party of Texas.”