Gov. Rick Perry Signs Sweeping Abortion Bill

Texas governor signs bill prohibiting abortion after the 20th week of pregnancy.
7:35 | 07/18/13

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Transcript for Gov. Rick Perry Signs Sweeping Abortion Bill
This is a special report from ABC news. -- on Dan -- in New York with the CBC news digital special report. A little more than four weeks after state senator Wendy Davis -- -- its passage of the famous filibuster. A sweeping new round of abortion restrictions are becoming law in Texas. -- life out there governor Rick Perry. Who called a special session of the state legislature to revive that bill which bans abortion after twenty weeks and requires doctors to have. Hospital admitting privileges. Is now rubber -- and at this morning. Joined now by ABC's Devin -- -- Washington DC talk a bit more about the details of this legislation and potential national impact. Texas' move could have. -- we have seen some pretty intense protests against this bill not only from the state senator but. Also from a lot of folks outside of the capital what's on the atmosphere in Austin over the past 24 hour. Yes that's right it's really -- become the epicenter of the nation's a debate over abortion it's very kind of fun to watch -- actually circus like atmosphere there in the at the Statehouse in Texas we've seen -- demonstrators. Pro. Abortion rights demonstrators dressed up in some pretty -- usual costumes gynecological. Devices people throwing tampons we've also seen of course abortion. Opponents holding signs of fetuses and and -- reading Bible passages quite the scene there this is really ignited a national debate and and it it it it's just beginning this is one of us several states this year about a dozen states that have been passing laws restricting abortion. -- is looking at some pictures their state senator Wendy Davis who had that thirteen hour filibuster which -- really sparked a great deal of conversation across country. There about a lot of adjectives that have been attached to this bill restrictive. Sweeping. Can you lay out exactly to what changes will this legislation house on the current law sure this -- One of the most -- restrictive abortion. Anti abortion bills in the country and it really -- three major things that are very controversial first. -- restricts the use of RU 486 that's the abortion pill requires a doctor to prescribe that. A woman can take the first tell -- home but she has to come back to the doctor's office to take -- second pill. That's been criticized as it is a significant hurdle for women it also bans as you mentioned before bans abortions after twenty weeks -- Texas already has a band. On abortions after 26 weeks which is pretty restrictive. In the national landscape. What about Wendy Davis herself because she has really become the poster child for a lot of -- efforts to have this bill. Killed essentially. She filibustered obviously. For such that length of time last month now we also -- in the she's been spending time in Washington. That's right she's gotta become the face the of the pro abortion rights movement she's been celebrated -- raising a lot of money since she did that. Filibuster last month -- I think she's raised about a million dollars in her own campaign funds in Texas. She's come to Washington to help raise money for other democratic causes and where were hearing rumors that she may -- interest in and possibly running for governor of Texas Democrat hasn't won there since 1994 but. She could have a shot she's kind of been celebrated but the very least we expect to see her on the national stage stumping for Democrats. As this is going to be a major theme in the upcoming mid term election. And if you widen the scope from this beyond a state of Texas there's been some discussion about the senate with that senator Marco Rubio from Florida may be taking the lead in fact looking at its own. Post twenty week abortion ban what are leaders saying about that possible proposal well -- -- A surprise we did hear from -- majority leader Harry -- said he'd be open. To maybe having that bill debated in the senate and of course the senate is controlled by Democrats there's very little chance that something like that would pass. Some speculation that may be allowing it to be debated could help Democrats -- of course they. Ran in the age 2012 campaign they hope to run again on this so called. War on women. That -- -- been advertising here kind of accusing Republicans of using these anti abortion bills. To attack women senators there may be a little bit of politicking there and that -- that come up but I don't think there's any chance that that that has a chance of passage in this. What about governor Rick Perry because he's obviously been a strong supporter of this which is why he called a special session. The legislature. Last week he made -- pretty -- announcements and -- fact that he was going to leave open the possibility of future plans greater politically speaking. And it was a pretty significant announcement today. Is now officially a lame duck governor and if you look at the way that he is handled this particular issue do you think that it gives us some kind of insight from what his future plans might be next. -- Possibly -- insists this is not a one offer for Perry or the state of Texas -- give -- a very. Red state they've in his he's the longest serving governor during his tenure at three terms in office there is not running for fourth. There have been repeated attempts to restrict abortion in that state of course. And in 2012 when he was a presidential candidate we shot anti abortion proposals and measures worked a key part of his candidacy so. That this isn't unusual for Perry but it certainly is a sign of something that she's feels very passionately about that he could continue to advocate for and and in Texas is really seen as a leader -- the -- so moving forward that from this legislation what to opponents have what are their next actions -- have any any possible recourse. Well -- abortion rights groups in Texas again this is kind of a state level issue at this point are promising to examine. -- of their legal options we've heard from the ACLU Planned Parenthood for America. Is also considering whether they could challenge this in court the world -- from Democrats groups like president Obama's super pac organizing for action. And they're really gonna take this up now at the very least and use this as kind of -- -- point of leverage for these upcoming -- fourteen mid term elections. -- drive turnout among Democrats even in the red state of Texas. With hope that they can maybe turn that -- some point on the road. Is there a possibility that if you look at the national -- -- -- -- possibly the president could weigh in himself or would he be letting super -- handle most of of the of the grunt work if you will the kind of push their agenda forward. Well he hasn't been shy certainly about talking about. Allowing women access to this -- was a huge theme of his campaign. It whenever he addressed women's groups was the right. To have access to abortion and and other issues. So I don't know that we'll see him come out in and take this time right now kind of out of the blue I think that in. In many ways this is still -- state issue we'll see his. His advocacy group we'll see the national Democrats the Democratic National Committee go after this and relieved but played this up I don't know that we'll hear specifically for -- from the president but certainly. It's something that he will speak out against if he's asked about her has the opportunity. All right what happens in Texas obviously having a potential national implications ABC's Devin -- Washington DC got to thank you for that. Against Texas controversial abortion bill signed into law today by governor Rick Perry. Forcing doctors to have -- -- hospital admitting privileges and banning abortions after twenty weeks we have a complete write up. And abcnews.com. Portuguese legislation in Texas for now I'm Dan -- New York with this ABC news digital special reports. This has been a special report from me.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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