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Texas Senate OKs bill aimed at closing nearly every abortion clinic in the state

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Republicans on Tuesday passed a slate of new abortion restrictions by a vote of 20 to 10 that critics say will force all but five of the state’s abortion clinics to shut their doors forever.

S.B. 5 would require abortion clinics to hire doctors with hospital admitting privileges, mandate that abortion clinics become licensed as ambulatory surgical centers and force doctors to administer medication that causes abortions in person, rather than through a prescription.

All three measures were ditched by Republicans during the normal session due to the two-thirds requirement, which cemented the need for Democratic support. The special session requires only a simple majority for bills to pass, prompting Democrats to accuse Texas Republicans of using a loophole to pass their most brazenly partisan agenda items.

Because surgical and medication abortions are so safe, it’s incredibly rare for abortion doctors to carry hospital admitting privileges. The Texas Tribune noted that the most recent death in Texas attributed to complications from a surgical abortion was in 2000. The National Abortion Federation estimates that only one in every 160,000 abortions will result in complications leading to death, usually from embolism or reaction to anesthesia. By comparison, the risks of carrying a child to term are exponentially greater.

That’s why the vast majority of abortion clinics in the state are not licensed as ambulatory surgery centers, which requires buildings meet certain specifications. Forcing the clinics to obtain those licenses would not just require an application and filing fee, but costly remodels to their facilities as well.

However, Republicans like Sen. Bob Deuell insisted that the clinics likely have enough money to handle the expenses caused by these new big government regulations, according to the Tribune. Pro-choice groups say otherwise, telling The Associated Press that the bill will force about 90 percent of the state’s clinics to close their doors.

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If the Texas House approves the bill that Senators backed on Tuesday, the whole state of Texas and its 26 million-plus citizens will be left with just five abortion clinics that meet the new standards, according to RH Reality Check. Gov. Rick Perry (R), who’s said he would like to ban abortion entirely and would defy the Supreme Court to do so, is a supporter of the measure.

This video is from ABC News affiliate KVUE-TV, aired Tuesday, June 18, 2013.


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[“Stock Photo: Angry Woman Screaming” on Shutterstock.]

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Pentagon gives senators classified briefing on UFOs reported by the Navy

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While it might sound like something out of "The X-Files," Navy pilots have been seeing UFOs, and U.S. Senators now want to know what's happening.

According to Politico, three more senators met with Pentagon officials for a classified briefing Wednesday about encounters pilots are having with unidentified aircraft. It seems the Pentagon is getting more and more requests by officials with high clearances to figure out what's happening.

The crafts are, at their most basic, nothing more than "unidentified aircraft," and while it isn't likely they're little green men, there are some senators who might have concerns about whether these UFOs are actually a foreign adversary.

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Wall Street Journal issues blistering editorial asking Trump what the point is of a second term

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In a blistering editorial, the Wall Street Journal is asking President Donald Trump what the point of a second term is since he hasn't done anything in his first term.

During his rally in Orlando Tuesday, Trump repeated the same tired lines and same tired policies from 2016. The "Promises Made, Promises Kept" slogan shown over the crowd, yet the supporters didn't understand the irony.

"The most striking fact of his speech was how backward looking it was," the editorial board said. "Every incumbent needs to remind voters of his record, Mr. Trump more than most because the media are so hostile."

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‘Crosses a line’: New York Times publisher unleashes on Trump for accusing paper of ‘treason’

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On Wednesday, New York Times publisher A. G. Sulzberger wrote a blistering editorial in the Wall Street Journal, saying that President Donald Trump's latest attack on his paper "crosses a line."

First it was the "the failing New York Times." Then "fake news." Then "enemy of the people," wrote Sulzberger. "President Trump's escalating attacks on The New York Times have paralleled his broader barrage on American media. He's gone from misrepresenting our business, to assaulting our integrity, to demonizing our journalists with a phrase that’s been used by generations of demagogues. Now the president has escalated his attacks even further, accusing the Times of a crime so grave it is punishable by death.

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