Texas Abortion Law: Supreme Court Again Backs Away From Blocking But Will Hear Oral Arguments

Texas Abortion Law
Texas Abortion Law

The US Supreme Court has decided to allow the controversial Texas abortion law to stay for the moment. But in the meantime, it will hear verbal arguments regarding the case soon on November 1.

The Supreme Court declared that it was deferring action on the request by the Biden administration to place on hold the Texas abortion law until the Supreme Court looks into the appeals. It effectively means that the Texas abortion law, called Senate Bill Eight will possibly remain effective for months even as the top court mulls over its fate.

It will hear arguments in November on the unconnected point of whether the government has the authority to contest the Texas abortion law. It will also go over the question of if any sanction to halt its enforcement is applicable to state judges.

Justice Sotomayor has let on that the Texas abortion law should have been kept on hold even as the court considers its merit. Any assurance of future resolution doesn’t offer any consolation for the women of Texas who are eligible for immediate relief and are looking for abortion care.

The court’s decision to push back action on the Texas abortion law comes one day after the state urged the Texas high court to not entertain the federal government’s plea to stop its implementation.

Texas Abortion Law: Suit To Be Filed By Private Citizen

The abortion law is unusual and unlike normal abortion laws as it does not rely on officials to implement it. Anyone private citizen can on their own file a lawsuit against the provider of abortion and seek damages of $10,000 max.

Robert Pitman, the US District Court Judge for Texas, had earlier blocked the application of the controversial law in October. But the Supreme Court overturned it and put his ruling on hold. It effectively allowed the continuation of the Texas abortion law.

Any decision is unlikely before spring. The outcome could move towards common grounds. The court might strike down the tough Texas abortion law but uphold the milder Mississippi statute of 2018, without touching Roe vs Wade. Abortion in Mississippi is up to the 15th week of pregnancy except in a medical emergency, while Texas has banned abortion at about 6 weeks.