As of Thursday, Jan. 9, with a vote of 3-2, the city of Rusk adopted the Sanctuary Cities ordinance, which outlaws abortion and the creation of abortion clinics with the city. With a population exceeding 5,500, Rusk is, as of now, the largest city to adopt the statute. 

According to Dickson’s Sanctuary Cities for the Unborn website, during the 2018 Republican Party Primary, voters had the opportunity to vote on Proposition 7, which allowed voters to assert their opinion regarding the abolition of abortion in Texas. 

In Cherokee County, of the 5,875 votes counted, 4,618 voted in favor of the idea of abolishing abortion in the state of Texas and 1,257 voted against the idea. The 3-2 City Council vote is a further display of the divide amongst Cherokee County residents, but evidence of the conservative majority. 

Mark Lee Dickson, director of Right to Life East Texas, along with the efforts of several other resident volunteers, has been traveling the state virtually non-stop in an attempt to rally more positive votes for the Sanctuary City for the Unborn ordinance. 

On Monday night, the city of Jacksboro held it’s monthly city council meeting in which Dickson presented the city with the ordinance, along with supporting statements from residents of the city. With relative ease, city council members voted against the adoption of the law, most of whom had previously prepared statements regarding the ordinance and their intention to vote against it. 

“This is not how city government should work. It sends the message that the minds of the City Council were already made up. It also sent the message that the citizens of Jacksboro’s voices really didn’t matter. At least not tonight. At least not on this issue,” Dickson said, “In Councilman Greg Robinson’s statement, he referred to the ordinance as symbolic which proved that he, at the very least, did not understand the ordinance and, quite possibly, did not have any desire to want to understand the ordinance. This was extremely disappointing.”

Despite this minor setback, the movement continues with votes pending in the towns of Big Spring, Colorado City, and Gary. The city of Abilene will be addressing the issue next week and efforts are currently underway in Carthage and Lindale. 

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