As the Texas legislature opens a special session to pass an anti-abortion bill, thousands have joined Wendy Davis at the state capitol in Austin to protest the maneuver. Davis, a Democratic state senator who famously filibustered the bill to death last week, will have fewer avenues to derail it this time around: Legislators are introducing it with enough time to virtually guarantee its passage. Still, the measure—which adds onerous, non-medical-based burdens to abortion clinics and clinicians while banning all such procedures after 20 weeks of pregnancy—is facing intense hostility by pro-choice activists. Davis has said she will “fight with every fiber I have to keep it from passing,” though she has not stated whether she plans to revive her filibuster tactic.
Today’s rally, which also features Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards and actress Lisa Edelstein, comes amidst a sea of speculation that Davis will enter the 2014 Texas gubernatorial race. The rising star has conceded that she’ll take a “second look” at the prospect, but has demurred that “I am not taking that look right now.” If she does run, the race is sure to be a fierce showdown between the ideological adversaries. Current Texas governor Rick Perry, who is eyeing a fourth term, recently opined that Davis hasn’t “learned from her own example” in her decision not to have an abortion, leading Davis to say Perry is “bullying women.”