Fort Worth Republican U.S. Rep. Kay Granger has been endorsed by Texas Alliance for Life, a discredited “pro-life” organization actively opposing a local mother’s fight to keep her baby alive.
Baby Tinslee Lewis was born with congenital heart disease and is currently at Cook Children’s Medical Center in Fort Worth, relying on a ventilator to live. On October 31 of last year, the hospital announced it would remove Tinslee’s life support on November 10, over the objections of her mother.
As justification for this decision, the hospital did not provide any reasons relating to bodily health—only a vague “quality-of-life” argument.
The hospital’s action is legal under Texas’ unjust 10-day rule. According to Texas Right to Life, this law allows a hospital committee to end “life-sustaining care,” even if the patient or his or her surrogate objects.
Trinity Lewis, Tinslee’s mother, has been fighting the hospital in a desperate effort to keep her baby alive. “Cook has been saying that Tinslee has pulmonary hypertension,” Lewis said in a press conference this month. “But several really great doctors who do not work for Cook reviewed her medical records in December and said they do not see any signs of pulmonary hypertension.”
Trinity’s fight has been bouncing around the court system, with the latest development being the Texas Court of Appeals granting an emergency injunction temporarily sparing Tinslee’s life, pending a hearing or future decision of the court.
While Texas Right to Life has actively helped Trinity try to save her baby, Texas Alliance for Life—who portray themselves as a “pro-life” organization—filed an amici curiae brief with the district court arguing against Trinity having the right to decide whether or not to keep her baby alive. Joe Pojman, the founder and executive director of TAL, even wrote an editorial arguing that allowing Tinslee to die “a natural, peaceful death,” instead of fighting for her life, is “the truest pro-life position.”
That position shouldn’t come as a surprise to those that have followed the organization. For years, TAL has given cover to liberal politicians while constantly working behind the scenes to thwart pro-life reforms in the state legislature.
Granger, who is facing a challenger in the 2020 March Republican Primary, boasts on her campaign website that she is “a strong, pro-life conservative,” yet she has cheerily received Texas Alliance for Life’s endorsement and to date has said nothing about Tinslee Lewis.
Granger is being challenged by former Colleyville Mayor Pro Tem Chris Putnam, who has been endorsed by Texas Right to Life as well as Texans for Fiscal Responsibility.
Texas Scorecard reached out to both campaigns for comment about the unjust 10-day rule and Tinslee Lewis. Only Putnam replied.
“I am 100% pro-life, from conception to natural death,” Putnam told Texas Scorecard. “It is scary to think Texas law allows death panels where doctors can decide who lives and dies based on expenses. Tinslee is a prime example of how barbaric the law really is.”
The primary election will be on March 3, 2020. Early voting will be from February 18-28.