Gov. Rick Perry joined fellow anti-abortion lawmakers and advocacy groups at his side to sign into law House Bill 2, the controversial abortion bill tightening requirements on clinics that perform abortions and banning the ability to have an abortion after 20 weeks into a pregnancy.
"In signing House Bill 2 today we celebrate and further cement the foundation on which the culture of life in Texas is built upon," said Perry. "This is a bill that protects unborn babies after the fifth month of a pregnancy. We know that not very far past that point children can survive -- thrive -- with the appropriate care."
The bill places a number of restrictions on abortion clinics in Texas that include maintaining surgical ambulatory center standards and having a doctor on staff that has admitting privileges to a hospital no more than 30 miles away.
"Clinics who don’t comply, they don't [have to] shut down, they can continue to provide women health, they just can’t continue to provide an abortion," said Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst.
Several groups, including the national office of the Center for Reproductive Rights, Planned Parenthood and the Texas branch of the ACLU, are looking into a legal challenge to the bill that could stop it from taking effect until the court system has determined it's fate.