Texas woman fighting for legal abortion flees the state

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After a week of legal whiplash, the woman at the center of a legal fight over whether she can receive an emergency abortion in Texas has fled the state. 

A Texas district court last Thursday granted Kate Cox permission to get an abortion despite Texas’s strict ban, the first time a pregnant woman sought a court order for the procedure since Roe v. Wade was overturned last year. 

But within hours, Attorney General Ken Paxton (R) asked the state Supreme Court to block the order immediately. The court did so late Friday night and has yet to issue a final ruling. 

Nancy Northup, president and CEO at the Center for Reproductive Rights, which has been representing Cox, said she couldn’t wait. Cox has been to the emergency room four times during her pregnancy. 

“Kate’s case has shown the world that abortion bans are dangerous for pregnant people, and exceptions don’t work,” Northup said. “She desperately wanted to be able to get care where she lives and recover at home surrounded by family. While Kate had the ability to leave the state, most people do not, and a situation like this could be a death sentence.”    

Cox is a 31-year-old mother of two from the Dallas area. Her fetus has been diagnosed with full trisomy 18, a chromosomal anomaly that leads to miscarriage, stillbirth or the death of the infant within hours, days or weeks after birth.  

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