Before Roe v. Wade was overturned, Texans had been living under a de facto abortion ban for months. The consequences of that ban were on full display in the U.S. Senate when Amanda Zurawski testified about her harrowing ordeal that should never have happened.
Today the Senate Judiciary Committee convened for the first hearing of the year on reproductive rights at the U.S. Capitol. The hearing, which was billed as “The Assault on Reproductive Rights in a post-Dobbs, also provided testimonials from medical professionals who noted the dangers of abortion bans on overall healthcare.
Zurawski directed her powerful testimony at the two senators from Texas, John Cornyn and Ted Cruz, who she noted were “regrettably not in the room now.” Zurawski said that the anti-abortion policies they support, almost cost her her life. “I nearly died on their watch,” she said. “Furthermore, as a result of what happened to me, I may have been robbed of having children in the future.”
Zurawski also states that what she endured was horrific, but she is just one of many women who has faced such medical terrors. She recounted that not all women have partners with the ability to seek emergency care at any moment, or have understanding workforces, or even have the means to possibly look at traveling out state. “What about all the women who don’t have those same opportunities?” she asked.
In addition to speaking in front of the Senate, Zurawski is one of five plaintiffs in the first-ever lawsuit challenging the Texas abortion ban. According to the lawsuit, Zurawski went through months of fertility treatment before finally becoming pregnant in 2022. Sadly, she was diagnosed with a condition that prematurely dilates the cervix, and the fetus would not survive. Because she lived in Texas under the new abortion ban, she was sent home without receiving the proper care. She developed sepsis and acute sepsis shock.
The lawsuit that Zurawski is a part of is not seeking a full repeal of Senate Bill 8, which is one of the abortion bans that also allows anybody to sue an individual they believe has aided or abetted an abortion. Instead, Zurawski and her fellow plaintiffs are asking for a “declaratory judgment” to make clear that there should be medical exceptions to protect the health of pregnant individuals facing emergencies in the state of Texas.
Cruz is up for re-election next year. There are rumblings that he could face several high-profile democratic opponents, including Congressman Colin Allred or State Senator Roland Gutierrez. Cruz is currently facing renewed scrutiny for his role in attempting to overturn the 2020 election, which President Joe Biden won. New tapes from Fox News producer Abby Grossberg reveal that Cruz was discussing with her and host Maria Bartiromo his plan to form an electoral commission to block Biden’s win. Cruz was the first Senator to object on January 6, just before the Capitol was stormed.
A longtime writer and journalist, Jessica was thrilled to join the Texas Signal where she could utilize her unique perspective on politics and culture. As the Features and Opinion Editor, she is responsible for coordinating editorials and segments from diverse authors. She is also the host of the podcast the Tex Mix, as well as the co-host for the weekly SignalCast. Jessica attended Harvard College, is a onetime fitness blogger, and has now transitioned to recreational runner (for which her joints are thankful).