FILE - In this Tuesday, June 25, 2013, file photo, Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, center, holds up two fingers to signal a "No" vote as the session where tshe tried to filibuster an abortion bill draws to a close, in Austin, Texas. Hundreds of abortion rights activists ensured that the first special legislative session descended into chaos. Now, Texas Gov. Rick Perry has convened a second one and urged abortion opponents to respond with mobilizations of their own. (AP Photo/Eric Gay, File)
Last Modified: Monday, July 01, 2013 1:51 PM
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — More than 5,000 demonstrators are rallying in Austin, Texas, against new abortion restrictions.
Television stars and Natalie Maines of the Dixie Chicks appeared at the Texas Capitol's largest political rally in years. The rally came just hours before the Legislature was scheduled to begin a new special session.
Gov. Rick Perry called on lawmakers to restrict when, where and how women obtain abortions. Supporters say they will improve women's health care, while opponents say they will shut down clinics through over-regulation.
Women addressing the crowd called on lawmakers to reject the law because it took away a woman's right to choose. But Republican majorities who oppose all abortions are expected to pass the bill over the next 30 days.
Anti-abortion protesters were expected to rally later Monday afternoon.