San Antonio Current
By Mary Tuma
Published: March 26, 2014
Ten minutes left on the clock.
The tension, palpable. The chaos, looming.
By now, the scene had drawn an estimated 180,000 viewers from around the country, even attracting the attention of President Barack Obama.
Orange-clad activists filled the Texas Capitol gallery in solidarity with state Sen. Wendy Davis (D-Forth Worth), who stood for 11 hours to defeat one of the harshest abortion laws in the nation. Using every parliamentary trick in their arsenal, conservative Republicans on the Senate floor aimed to knock Davis off her feet during the now-storied filibuster. With moments to go before the end of the special session, they succeeded in calling a third and final strike against her.
Across the room, close friend, state Sen. Leticia Van de Putte (D-San Antonio) struggled to gain the attention of the presiding senate chair, who passed up the newly elected president pro tem (technically, second in command at the Senate) for her male counterparts. Frustrated, exhausted and incredulous, Van de Putte couldn’t handle it any longer.