Last night’s incredible defeat of Texas Senate Bill 5, which would grossly limit safe access to abortion and reproductive health care, has largely, and rightfully, been attributed to Fort Worth Senator Wendy Davis. Her 13-hour filibuster was a critical piece of defeating the legislation. But we cannot understate the importance of other pro-choice senators in the legislature, who offered their support to Davis–– and the will of the pro-choice crowd sitting in the gallery during last night’s proceedings. Case in point: Last night, Davis’s fellow Democratic senator Leticia Van de Putte, who spent the day at her father’s funeral, challenged the Senate president after he failed to recognize her on the floor.
With ten minutes left before the bill was set to expire, Van de Putte asked the following parliamentary inquiry: “At what point must a female senator raise her hand or her voice to be recognized over her male colleagues?”
The crowd erupted in boisterous, powerful cheers. Cheers that lasted more than ten minutes and helped carry the bill past its deadline. Last night’s crowd––which included Frisky contributors Andrea Grimes and Dan Solomon––offered a passionate reminder of the value of all our voices in the struggle over women’s reproductive health care and rights. Thank you, to Wendy Davis, Leticia Van de Putte and every other voice that refused to be silenced during last night’s contentious debate.