Texas’s passage of the so-called “Heartbeat Act,” which bans abortions, with no exceptions, beyond six weeks of pregnancy, and which enforces the law through offering a “bounty” of at least $10,000 for successfully suing anyone who “aids and abets” an abortion, calls for serious scrutiny of the role special interest groups played in advancing the legislation.

CREW requested records on Texas state legislators who authored either the House or Senate versions of the “Heartbeat Act” (SB 8/HB 1515), and their communications with prominent anti-abortion groups like the Susan B. Anthony List, Federalist Society and Texans for Life Coalition.

Groups like the Federalist Society are notoriously intertwined with dark money networks that exercise influence through secret money or political connections, pushing through conservative judge nominations and currying favor with government officials. Given that laws like the “Heartbeat Act” threaten Constitutional rights while disproportionately affecting Black and Hispanic people, especially migrant workers and poor pregnant people who are less likely to be able to afford to travel out of state to obtain an abortion, and have already inspired copycat versions of the bill in places like Florida, the public should know whether secretive special interests are unduly influencing their elected officials.

Public Information Act requests

Header image by Nicolas Henderson under a Creative Commons license.

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