Breaking News
Get Actionable Insights with InvestingPro+: Start 7 Day FREE Trial Register here
Investing Pro 0
Ad-Free Version. Upgrade your experience. Save up to 40% More details

Supreme Court's abortion draft upends Texas Democratic U.S. House race

World May 04, 2022 07:00PM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This article has already been saved in your Saved Items
© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Democrat Jessica Cisneros, who is campaigning for a House seat, speaks during her watch party in Laredo, Texas, U.S. March 3, 2020. REUTERS/Veronica Cardenas/File Photo

By Moira Warburton and Richard Cowan

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Supreme Court's leaked draft opinion has injected new urgency into a Texas primary that pits the House of Representatives' lone anti-abortion Democrat against an advocate of abortion rights.

Progressive Democratic challenger Jessica Cisneros on Wednesday called on top House Democrats to drop their support for Representative Henry Cuellar, an 18-year-incumbent, over his anti-abortion stance, ahead of a May 24 runoff primary.

The draft showed the court could be ready to overturn the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion nationwide, and the leak sent Cuellar scrambling to square his position with his party.

"With the House majority on the line, he could very much be the deciding vote on the future of our reproductive rights and we cannot afford to take that risk," Cisneros, a 28-year-old immigration attorney, said in a press release on Wednesday.

Democrats, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, House Whip James Clyburn and Majority Leader Steny Hoyer have endorsed and stood by Cuellar, who represents a moderate district in south Texas that includes parts of San Antonio and areas bordering Mexico.

"As a Catholic, I do not support abortion, however we cannot have an outright ban," Cuellar said in a statement on Tuesday evening.

Cuellar, 66, was the only House Democrat to vote against the Women's Health Protection Act in 2021, which would have prohibited government restrictions on access to abortion.

Pelosi said in March that she supports Cuellar and all Democratic incumbents "from right to left. That is what I do." Her office did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Wednesday.

Clyburn was attending a Cuellar campaign event on Wednesday. His office did not respond to a request for comment. A Hoyer spokesperson did not comment directly on Cuellar.

Nationwide, 63% of voters say they support candidates who oppose banning abortion, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll on Tuesday.

A Cisneros victory over Cuellar in the primary could threaten the party's hold on the seat in the Nov. 8 general election. Democrats are already concerned about Democratic President Joe Biden's low approval ratings amid voter worries about inflation, COVID and immigration.

The primary result may also be viewed as a signal about how abortion politics could play out nationally in November. The Supreme Court leak could turn Texas Democrats against Cuellar, given his opposition to abortion.

"Once you start saying that what's at stake is not limits on abortion but whether women should have access to abortion ... there's no gray areas here," said James Henson, director of the Texas Politics Project at the University of Texas in Austin.

Even in a district that tends to be more moderate than the rest of the Democratic Party, the possible overturning of Roe "gives Cisneros something to talk about that Henry Cuellar doesn't have much room to hide on."

Supreme Court's abortion draft upends Texas Democratic U.S. House race

Related Articles

Add a Comment

Comment Guidelines

We encourage you to use comments to engage with other users, share your perspective and ask questions of authors and each other. However, in order to maintain the high level of discourse we’ve all come to value and expect, please keep the following criteria in mind:  

  •            Enrich the conversation, don’t trash it.

  •           Stay focused and on track. Only post material that’s relevant to the topic being discussed. 

  •           Be respectful. Even negative opinions can be framed positively and diplomatically. Avoid profanity, slander or personal attacks directed at an author or another user. Racism, sexism and other forms of discrimination will not be tolerated.

  • Use standard writing style. Include punctuation and upper and lower cases. Comments that are written in all caps and contain excessive use of symbols will be removed.
  • NOTE: Spam and/or promotional messages and comments containing links will be removed. Phone numbers, email addresses, links to personal or business websites, Skype/Telegram/WhatsApp etc. addresses (including links to groups) will also be removed; self-promotional material or business-related solicitations or PR (ie, contact me for signals/advice etc.), and/or any other comment that contains personal contact specifcs or advertising will be removed as well. In addition, any of the above-mentioned violations may result in suspension of your account.
  • Doxxing. We do not allow any sharing of private or personal contact or other information about any individual or organization. This will result in immediate suspension of the commentor and his or her account.
  • Don’t monopolize the conversation. We appreciate passion and conviction, but we also strongly believe in giving everyone a chance to air their point of view. Therefore, in addition to civil interaction, we expect commenters to offer their opinions succinctly and thoughtfully, but not so repeatedly that others are annoyed or offended. If we receive complaints about individuals who take over a thread or forum, we reserve the right to ban them from the site, without recourse.
  • Only English comments will be allowed.

Perpetrators of spam or abuse will be deleted from the site and prohibited from future registration at’s discretion.

Write your thoughts here
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
Post also to:
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Thanks for your comment. Please note that all comments are pending until approved by our moderators. It may therefore take some time before it appears on our website.
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Add Chart to Comment
Confirm Block

Are you sure you want to block %USER_NAME%?

By doing so, you and %USER_NAME% will not be able to see any of each other's's posts.

%USER_NAME% was successfully added to your Block List

Since you’ve just unblocked this person, you must wait 48 hours before renewing the block.

Report this comment

I feel that this comment is:

Comment flagged

Thank You!

Your report has been sent to our moderators for review
Continue with Google
Sign up with Email