Status: 10.12.2021 6:53 p.m.
Texas’s strict abortion law remains in effect following a ruling by the US Supreme Court. However, abortion clinics are allowed to sue. The legal battle could now start all over again.
The US Supreme Court is keeping the strict abortion law in Texas in effect for the time being. However, it allows abortion providers to take legal action against it. That emerges from a decision of the Supreme Court in Washington.
No exceptions for rape
It is the most radical abortion law in the United States, prohibiting abortion once the fetus’s heartbeat can be determined. This is usually the case after six weeks, when many women do not even know that they are pregnant. Even in the case of rape or incest, the law does not provide for any exceptions.
It is extremely unusual for citizens to monitor compliance. Private individuals can therefore sue doctors and helpers who assist in an abortion. This enables lawsuits against a wide range of people – from the taxi driver driving a woman to the clinic to parents who financially support their daughter with an abortion.
“Partial victory” for abortion clinics
Observers rated the decision of the Supreme Court as a partial victory for abortion providers, because the legal battle is now likely to start all over again. It is almost certain that the same federal judge who blocked the Texan law once will be called again. Then his decision should be examined by an appeals court, which has already twice allowed the enforcement of the abortion law.
The case should then land back at the US Supreme Court. The nine judges at the Supreme Court have not yet found five votes in favor of suspending the law.
The Supreme Court is currently dominated by conservative judges. Under ex-President Donald Trump, the court was given a clear conservative majority through new appointments.