Is Sen. Patrick putting ambition in front of abortion?

I hate to say it but it certainly looks as though Sen. Dan Patrick is putting his personal ambition ahead of the need for a solid abortion reduction sonogram bill. He compromised quite a bit to get his own sonogram bill out of the Senate, watering it down substantially. Now that it has been sent to the House, he is apparently pulling out all stops to get his bill through quickly, rather than the bill set aside by Speaker Joe Straus on this issue, HB15.

comparison done by Texas Right to Life clearly shows that HB15 is a far stronger bill than Sen. Patrick’s bill (companion is HB201), yet the factions that Sen. Patrick used to try to defeat Speaker Straus are now sending out urgent messages saying that it is more important to pass Sen. Patrick’s bill than the stronger bill because it would be “quicker”.

* * * URGENT LEGISLATIVE ALERT 2/21/11 * * *

Please urge Texas House Speaker Joe Straus to support the pro-life Patrick-Morrison Sonogram Bill, Senate Bill 16 / House Bill 201

Each day of delay means dozens of abortions will occur that could have been averted!

==> Please forward to pro-life individuals and email lists <==

Please immediately call and urge Texas House Speaker Joe Straus to support the pro-life Patrick-Morrison Sonogram Bill, Senate Bill 16 / House Bill 201, and to allow it to move promptly through the committee process and onto the House floor.

Senate Bill 16 and House Bill 201 are “companions.” They are really the same bill, and one can be substituted for the other at appropriate times. The Senate passed Senate Bill 16 last week. The House State Affairs Committee will consider House Bill 201 on Wednesday, February 23.

Your call is urgently needed. Every day of delay in passing this bill will means dozens of abortions will occur that might have been averted. That is because 220 abortions are performed each day in Texas (81,500 per year). We believe the Patrick-Morrison bill could reduce the abortions by 10-20% or more.

Quicker? By a couple of weeks? In the long run, those couple of weeks are meaningless, especially given the fact that this bill is far weaker! Why on earth would the Texas Alliance for Life send out an email hoping for a weaker bill?

I hate to say it but I think it gets down to basic politics. If HB15, the stronger bill, passes, it will go to conference committee and someone besides Sen. Patrick will be standing next to the Governor when he signs it. I also think that is the answer to Paul Burka’s observation.

When will we conservatives stop using abortion as a political football and focus on actually reducing them? Sen. Patrick needs to step aside and let the House pass the stronger bill, then clap for whomever is on the podium with the Governor as he signs it.