Fox News host Martha MacCallum attacked access to clinics offering abortions in Texas, taking issue with the fact that the clinics offer abortions at all, and not that a recently defeated state bill would have imposed so many new restrictions as to render most clinics legally inoperable.
During the July 1 edition of Fox News' America's Newsroom, co-host MacCallum called into question Texas State Senator Wendy Davis' filibuster that defeated Texas' Senate Bill 5 (SB5) which, if passed, would have been one of the nation's most restrictive abortion laws. Critics of the bill said it would have shuttered all but five of the 47 clinics that provide abortions in Texas. MacCallum attempted to discredit this claim, saying, “That makes you just wonder how many of these clinics are surviving on the fact that they are performing abortions, if so many of them would have to close if indeed it were able to pass”:
MacCallum scoffed at the restrictions that SB 5 would have enacted, but medical experts in Texas oppose the bill. The Texas district of American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) issued a statement against the bill, saying it “sets a dangerous precedent by legislating the practice of medicine and places women at risk by denying access to safe, legal reproductive health services.”
ACOG added that the bill's requirement that clinics offering abortions must maintain the same standards as ambulatory surgical centers would create “additional standards that single out abortion services from other outpatient procedures.”
MacCallum is not the only Fox News personality who has called into question Davis' fight to keep abortion accessible for women or the only one who has attempted to misrepresent support for her efforts. Fox contributor Laura Ingraham asked Davis on her radio program and via Twitter: “Which kids that you see on the playground shouldn't be there?” And a panel on Fox News Sunday attempted to depict SB 5 as having far more support than polls show in anticipation of Texas Gov. Rick Perry's promise to hold a July 1 special session of the state legislature to revive and pass the bill.