AUSTIN, Texas â€” The Texas Senate passed sweeping new abortion restrictions late Friday, sending them to Republican Gov. Rick Perry to sign into law after weeks of protests and rallies that drew thousands of people to the Capitol and made the state the focus of the national abortion debate.
Republicans used their large majority in the Texas Legislature to pass the bill nearly three weeks after a filibuster by Democratic Sen. Wendy Davis and an outburst by abortion-rights activists in the Senate gallery disrupted a deadline vote June 25.
Called back for a new special session by Perry, lawmakers took up the bill again as thousands of supporters and opponents held rallies and jammed the Capitol to testify at public hearings. As the Senate took its final vote, protesters in the hallway outside the chamber chanted, â€œShame! Shame! Shame!â€
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