(AUSTIN, Texas) -- For Democrats in Texas hoping to prevent an anti-abortion bill a second time from passing through the state legislature, time will be both an enemy and a friend.
Republicans now have a second special legislative session devoted almost exclusively to passing a bill that would ban abortions after 20 weeks and impose regulations that would shutter all but six abortion clinics in the state, giving them plenty of time to overcome Democratic objections to the bill.
But they can also count on Democrats to make those days as painful for them as possible.
After Democratic State Sen. Wendy Davis successfully stopped the bill in last week's legislative session with an 11-hour filibuster, Democrats and their pro-choice allies now have a captive national audience watching the activities of the state legislature very carefully, increasing the political risk for Republicans who have been labeled by Democrats as anti-women.
The next several weeks will likely entail a complex game of parliamentary maneuvering, heated rhetoric and political gamesmanship that have both local and national implications.
On Tuesday, Texas state legislators will hear testimony from Texans about the bill's impact for nine hours. But with both the full Texas House and Senate in recess until after the Fourth of July weekend, both sides have ample time to nail down their strategies.
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