Supreme Court Permits Continued Enforcement of Texas Six-Week Abortion Ban - WSJ

  

Category:  News & Politics

Via:  vic-eldred  •  4 months ago  •  41 comments

By:   By Jess Bravin

Supreme Court Permits Continued Enforcement of Texas Six-Week Abortion Ban - WSJ
“With today’s ruling, the lawsuit will continue in the appropriate venue, and the Texas Heartbeat Act will continue to save preborn lives,” Texas Right to Life, a leading antiabortion group in the state, wrote in a statement on its website.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T



WASHINGTON—The Supreme Court allowed Texas’  six-week abortion ban  to remain in effect indefinitely, issuing an order Thursday blocking litigation against the law while the state’s highest court  weighs a procedural question  related to the measure’s enforcement.

The court’s order was unsigned and, as is typical, provided no explanation. The three liberal justices dissented, arguing that Thursday’s order undermined  the court’s December decision  permitting abortion providers to proceed in limited fashion with their lawsuit against the Texas law.


“This case is a disaster for the rule of law and a grave disservice to women in Texas, who have a right to control their own bodies,” Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote in dissent, joined by Justices Stephen Breyer and Elena Kagan.

“With today’s ruling, the lawsuit will continue in the appropriate venue, and the Texas Heartbeat Act will continue to save preborn lives,” Texas Right to Life, a leading antiabortion group in the state, wrote  in a statement  on its website.


The Texas law, known as SB 8, bans nearly all abortions after about the sixth week of pregnancy, a restriction at odds with current Supreme Court precedent allowing women to obtain abortions prior to fetal viability, which occurs at about 24 weeks.

“Texans have been without abortion access for almost five months now, and there is no end in sight because the Supreme Court has done nothing to stop this unconstitutional ban,” said Nancy Northup, president of the Center for Reproductive Rights, which represents challengers to SB 8. “Seven other states have already introduced copycat bans now that the court has let Texas get away with this ploy.”

The Texas attorney general’s office didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

When states have enacted straightforward abortion bans, providers have been able to obtain injunctions by suing officials responsible for enforcement. Texas lawmakers sought to avoid such challenges by leaving enforcement up to private parties, providing them awards of at least $10,000 for filing civil lawsuits against those who provide abortions or assist women in obtaining them.

In its December decision, the Supreme Court by a 5-4 vote blocked a full-scale challenge to SB 8, finding that court clerks who would process SB 8 lawsuits weren’t appropriate defendants. But by an 8-1 vote the court found that some licensing officials, such as the head of the state medical board, played a role in SB 8’s enforcement and therefore could be sued.

At the providers’ request, Justice Neil Gorsuch expedited return of the case to the appeals court. In turn, the Fifth Circuit, rather than sending the case back to federal district court for proceedings against the licensing officials, scheduled argument on Texas’ motion to refer to the state Supreme Court the question of whether the state licensing officials actually were involved in SB 8’s enforcement.

Providers then returned to the Supreme Court on Jan. 3 asking the justices to order the Fifth Circuit to immediately transfer the case back to the district court. The clinics said the Fifth Circuit was entertaining superfluous legal questions that already had been resolved by the Supreme Court, delaying their opportunity to restore abortion rights in Texas.

The U.S. Supreme Court took no action before the Fifth Circuit’s Jan. 7 hearing, and the appeals court later granted Texas’s request to send the issue to the state Supreme Court. That leaves SB 8 in effect at least until the Texas Supreme Court responds to the Fifth Circuit.

At a Jan. 7 hearing, at least one Fifth Circuit judge suggested that delay could be for the best: In a separate case from Mississippi, the U.S. Supreme Court is considering whether to reduce or eliminate the constitutional right to end unwanted pregnancies that it recognized in 1973 in Roe v. Wade.

“Maybe we should just sit on this until the end of June and leave the hot potato with the Supreme Court,” Judge Edith Jones said, referring to when the justices typically announce their most contentious decisions.

In a separate dissent joined by the other two liberals, Justice Stephen Breyer said the Fifth Circuit “ignored our judgment,” leaving “an unconstitutional 6-week abortion ban in effect in Texas—as it has for over four months.”

The Texas law, passed in May, bars doctors from knowingly performing an abortion if there is a “detectable fetal heartbeat,” defined to include early cardiac activity in the embryo. It contains no exceptions for rape or incest.

The Fifth Circuit blocked challenges to SB 8 before it took effect on Sept. 1; the U.S. Supreme Court, by a 5-4 vote, declined then to intercede.

In October, however, the high court agreed to consider whether providers could proceed with their challenge, with an expedited schedule that saw argument in November leading to last month’s decision.

The Supreme Court’s conservative majority and the Fifth Circuit have described the issues with the law as procedural rather than directly related to abortion.

Justice Sotomayor on Thursday called those assertions disingenuous. “The state legislature enacted a convoluted law that instills terror in those who assist women exercising their rights between 6 and 24 weeks,” she wrote.



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Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
1  seeder  Vic Eldred    4 months ago

“The Times They Are A-Changin'" 

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
1.1  Gordy327  replied to  Vic Eldred @1    4 months ago

Not for the better

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
1.1.1  seeder  Vic Eldred  replied to  Gordy327 @1.1    4 months ago

Come gather 'round people
Wherever you roam
And admit that the waters
Around you have grown
And accept it that soon
You'll be drenched to the bone
If your time to you is worth savin'
Then you better start swimmin'
Or you'll sink like a stone
For the times they are a-changin'

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
1.1.2  Ozzwald  replied to  Gordy327 @1.1    4 months ago

Not for the better

Hey, Trump's SCOTUS appointees are just doing the job they were hired to do.  Remove the rights of women and force them back to 2nd class citizen status (barefoot and pregnant).

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
1.1.3  Gordy327  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1.2    4 months ago

Apparently, that's what many Trump supporters want too. To hell with women's rights, right?

 
 
 
devangelical
Professor Principal
1.2  devangelical  replied to  Vic Eldred @1    4 months ago

there's a name for bible thumping busy-bodies that can't keep their religious bullshit to themselves, compost.

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
1.2.1  seeder  Vic Eldred  replied to  devangelical @1.2    4 months ago

I guess not. So, we'll probably continue to hear everyone in the universe called a "racist!"

 
 
 
devangelical
Professor Principal
1.2.2  devangelical  replied to  Vic Eldred @1.2.1    4 months ago

there sure seems to be a lot of riders on that alleged rwnj defense of individual freedoms.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
1.2.3  Ozzwald  replied to  devangelical @1.2    4 months ago

there's a name for bible thumping busy-bodies that can't keep their religious bullshit to themselves, compost.

I was thinking "republican", but I guess they qualify as a synonym to compost.

 
 
 
XXJefferson51
Senior Guide
1.3  XXJefferson51  replied to  Vic Eldred @1    4 months ago

Celebrate life!  

 
 
 
Right Down the Center
Freshman Guide
2  Right Down the Center    4 months ago

Be prepared for calls to "pack the courts".  The left feels that if they can't win the existing game you need to change the rules.  Sounds like my kids, when they were about 8.

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
2.1  seeder  Vic Eldred  replied to  Right Down the Center @2    4 months ago

They have 280 days to try!

 
 
 
Hal A. Lujah
Professor Expert
2.2  Hal A. Lujah  replied to  Right Down the Center @2    4 months ago

if they can't win the existing game you need to change the rules

Like denying a sitting POTUS their opportunity to appoint a SCOTUS well within their term?

 
 
 
Right Down the Center
Freshman Guide
2.2.1  Right Down the Center  replied to  Hal A. Lujah @2.2    4 months ago

Deflection attempt noted

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.3  Ozzwald  replied to  Right Down the Center @2    4 months ago
The left feels that if they can't win the existing game you need to change the rules.

Change the rules? 

Like when republicans refused to allow Obama to nominate a justice because it was within a year of the next election, but then allowed Trump to nominate one days after the election just started?

That kind of rule changes?

 
 
 
Right Down the Center
Freshman Guide
2.3.1  Right Down the Center  replied to  Ozzwald @2.3    4 months ago
Deflection attempt noted

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.3.2  Ozzwald  replied to  Right Down the Center @2.3.1    4 months ago
Deflection attempt noted

So asking a question is a deflection attempt in your world.  Interesting.....

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
2.3.3  Tessylo  replied to  Ozzwald @2.3    4 months ago

That's what they say when you offer the truth and facts here - deflection.

LOL!

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.3.4  Ozzwald  replied to  Tessylo @2.3.3    4 months ago
That's what they say when you offer the truth and facts here - deflection.

In other words:

NO!  Don't look there!!!!  Only look over here through this tiny crack that only shows what I want to you see.  Any attempt to see beyond that little crack will be considered a deflection.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.4  CB   replied to  Right Down the Center @2    4 months ago

Please. "Right Down The Center" of what exactly? These conservatives have a fatalistic 'error' in their design. If you define life (personhood) as beginning at conception then any child CONCEIVED in the United States is by inherent right a citizen of this country! That is, the definition of "born" in the constitution will be immediately and effectively altered. Are you prepared for this?

Some conservatives will never agree to that line of argument. But it won't matter, because it will be true.

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
3  seeder  Vic Eldred    4 months ago

They are gathering in DC at this very moment

FJo74aZXoAIaF-E?format=jpg&name=small

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
3.1  Tessylo  replied to  Vic Eldred @3    4 months ago

She's not doing dick nor are any of those phonier than thou small c christians.  

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.2  CB   replied to  Vic Eldred @3    4 months ago

You want all 'preborns" children to have access to their rights as UNITED STATES CITIZENS at conception, right?!

 
 
 
JBB
Professor Principal
4  JBB    4 months ago

"And now, the rest of the story" - Paul Harvey

The Supreme Court affirmed the legal standing of Texas abortion providers to proceed with all of their lawsuits against Texas in Texas courts with some very pointed questions addressed to the Texas courts attached...

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
4.1  Gordy327  replied to  JBB @4    4 months ago

Hopefully, all the abortion providers will win their lawsuits.

 
 
 
JBB
Professor Principal
4.1.1  JBB  replied to  Gordy327 @4.1    4 months ago

The message from the US Supreme Court to the Texas Supreme Court was clear to me. "The Texas abortion law goes against federal law so it is your stupid problem to handle. We should not be throwing out your unconstitutional law. So, deal with it yourselves or we will have to"...

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
4.1.2  Gordy327  replied to  JBB @4.1.1    4 months ago

The fact that the SCOTUS allowed the law to stand to begin with is troublesome. Hopefully, saner legal minds in TX will take care of it and get that law overturned. 

 
 
 
Hal A. Lujah
Professor Expert
5  Hal A. Lujah    4 months ago

One day Republicans might figure out that most of these babies they are forcing to term are going to grow up in circumstances that will turn them firmly against the party that brought them into their poverty stricken life.  They can only prevent so many of them from reaching a voting booth.  Self righteousness leading directly into self defeat.

 
 
 
Right Down the Center
Freshman Guide
5.1  Right Down the Center  replied to  Hal A. Lujah @5    4 months ago

I can't wait for you to show proof of that conjecture.

 
 
 
Hal A. Lujah
Professor Expert
5.1.1  Hal A. Lujah  replied to  Right Down the Center @5.1    4 months ago

I can’t wait for you to show proof that I’m wrong.

 
 
 
Right Down the Center
Freshman Guide
5.1.2  Right Down the Center  replied to  Hal A. Lujah @5.1.1    4 months ago

I don't need to, I am not the one promoting B.S.  All the studies show that the people saved from dying vote for Republicans as a way to thank them from saving them from being murdered.  See, I can do it too.

 
 
 
Hal A. Lujah
Professor Expert
5.1.3  Hal A. Lujah  replied to  Right Down the Center @5.1.2    4 months ago

You didn’t do anything that I did.  I made no mention of studies.  This is straight up common sense.  If a 16 year old is forced to become a mother, the chances are high that she will be too burdened to meet her full potential, and become reliant on social services, and experience continuous poverty.  Why would anyone (other than white trash Trumptards who don’t know any better) vote for a party that works against their interests?

 
 
 
Right Down the Center
Freshman Guide
5.1.4  Right Down the Center  replied to  Hal A. Lujah @5.1.3    4 months ago

Funny thing about common sense, it is anything but common and it is often wrong.

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
5.1.5  Tessylo  replied to  Hal A. Lujah @5.1.3    4 months ago

That's the standard MO of RDtC - just deny what you say is true and state that what he says is.  

 
 
 
Kathleen
Professor Principal
6  Kathleen    4 months ago

Some people think about the unborn, some about the woman's rights.  I think about both. I think about after these children are born and I think about the rights and privacy of the woman and being her own body. No one likes abortion, but as I said before, I would rather see the process end then to see a unwanted child being mistreated or thrown in the system. It's easy for us to say don't get a abortion, but then again we are not the ones that have to raise the child either. It takes a lot of love, time, patience, money and its forever not just until they turn 18. If you can't give the child these things like they deserve, then you should not go through with it. ( I am thinking about the child after it is born). I also think the woman has the right to make the choice about her own body. 

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
6.1  Gordy327  replied to  Kathleen @6    4 months ago
It's easy for us to say don't get a abortion.

Those who say that tend to not look at the bigger picture either. They're stuck in their own idea of reality while coming off as sanctimonious

( I am thinking about the child after it is born). I also think the woman has the right to make the choice about her own body. 

Unfortunately, many anti-abortionists do not think about that. Neither do they likely care.

 
 
 
Kathleen
Professor Principal
6.1.1  Kathleen  replied to  Gordy327 @6.1    4 months ago

That’s a shame...

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
6.1.2  Gordy327  replied to  Kathleen @6.1.1    4 months ago

Yes it is. 

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
6.1.3  CB   replied to  Gordy327 @6.1    4 months ago

It has become a game. Big signs and poster boards. Sit-ins. WINNING. (It is not about what happens after the 'stage-lights and sound equipments' are packed up and put away safely while all goes dark. Then the lights come up again to press stories: Mistreatment, 'Want and Lack,' Abandonment, Forced marriages, and last but not least: "Baby Mama" and "Whose Yo Daddy" dramas.)

 
 
 
Nowhere Man
Junior Expert
7  Nowhere Man    4 months ago

Childish arguments... What's happening is they are trying to delay implementation of the law by forcing the law to decide who is a provider.. Expanding the scope of responsibility as a provider to include as many as possible to make the whole thing as unwieldy as possible... They are now trying including the medical boards as providers for the purposes of this law...

Delaying tactic that will eventually fail...

This law will not have a real legal challenge until someone is sued and the complainant wins... Only until then is it ripe for judgment.... the Supreme Court and the 5th circuit understand this and are probably tired of all the juvenile wrangling... This is why they are throwing it back all the time...

OR, the Mississippi case is decided, which either way will make the appeal of SB8 moot... (the Mississippi case directly challenges the constitutional right to an abortion) 

What all this represents is children playing a game arguing over the rules... It really does reveal how far they will go though...

But what is interesting the liberal justices on the Supreme Court would take this childish wrangling and use it to invalidate the law as a matter of course irregardless of legal procedures or the legality of the action... Nice to see the Court not taking shortcuts anymore...

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
8  CB     4 months ago

Women should demand 'relief' from courts over ED (erectile dysfunction) pills. If a woman can't have privacy consideration over when and where nine months of her right to life, liberty, and pursuits of happiness happen; why the heaven should old 'soft' men be artificially pumping out 'issue' (semen)??!

CALL TO ACTION: Stop The Abuse of Old 'Hard-Ons' and Egg-Bearing Girls and Women!

 
 

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