AUSTIN, Texas - Abortions are now almost fully banned in Texas.
That bill went into effect Thursday.
"I think it gives us some stronger tools and some better enforcement," said Jonathan Covey, director of policy for Texas Values. "This is definitely a monumental day for protecting the unborn in Texas."
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The law has an exception if the woman’s life is threatened or there is a risk of "substantial impairment of a major bodily function."
Treatment of ectopic pregnancies and miscarriages are not considered abortions, according to the bill language.
Senate Bill 8, which bans abortions after a heartbeat is detected, is already law in Texas. It relies on civil lawsuits for enforcement.
According to Texas Values, it is estimated that "over 53,000 lives have been saved from abortion" since that law went into effect.
Texas is one of three states with a post-Roe trigger law going into effect on Thursday and one of thirteen states total with a trigger law.
"I think it’s pretty bad," said UT student Abby Sawyer. "I think people should have their choice, especially in Texas, where healthcare is already not that good in the first place."
Austin-based Whole Woman’s Health, which announced in July that it would be moving its Texas clinics to New Mexico, reacted to the trigger law in a Facebook post.
"Today is a somber day in Texas," read the post in part. "Texas is our home and where Whole Woman’s Health started, but this doesn’t mark the end. Despite the shame and stigma anti-abortion extremists have proliferated, we know that abortion is a moral good and safe abortion care helps people and families thrive."