The man described as the legal architect of extreme Texas’s anti-abortion law once argued that women can effectively “control their reproductive lives” by committing themselves to abstinence before marriage. Texas law allows private citizens to file lawsuits against anyone who provides, aids and abets an abortion — even if the person getting the abortion became pregnant due to rape.
Former Texas solicitor general Jonathan Mitchell, the man who played a pivotal role in designing the legal framework of the state’s near-total abortion ban argued before the United States Supreme Court that if Roe was overturned it would not take away a woman’s right to control her body since she will still have the option of avoiding sex.
“Women can ‘control their reproductive lives’ without access to abortion; they can do so by refraining from sexual intercourse,” Mitchell wrote in the brief. “One can imagine a scenario in which a woman has chosen to engage in unprotected (or insufficiently protected) sexual intercourse on the assumption that an abortion will be available to her later. But when this court announces the overruling of Roe, that individual can simply change their behavior in response to the court’s decision if she no longer wants to take the risk of an unwanted pregnancy.”