Most of the nine justices of the Supreme Court of the United States were open on Monday to support that abortion providers can challenge Texas law in court. The regulations, in force since September, prohibit women from interrupting pregnancy after the sixth week, even in cases of rape and incest. The highest body of justice rejected a few weeks ago to block the draconian beat law, so the favorable signals of the conservative robes towards the plaintiffs gave back the breath to the defenders of the reproductive rights. Millions of women see historic ruling under threat Roe against Wade issued by the High Court in 1973, which legalized abortion in the country.
From Roe against WadeStates cannot prohibit abortion before the viability of the fetus, around 24 weeks of pregnancy. However, the Supreme Court is not discussing whether the Texas abortion law is unconstitutional, but whether it can be challenged in court. The High Court agreed to hear arguments from the Justice Department and abortion providers trying to overturn the restrictive law in lower courts. The regulation was designed precisely to avoid the potential blockade of justice: the Texas authorities, to remove responsibility, delegated the responsibility of applying the law to the ordinary citizen. They are the ones who are empowered to civilly sue whoever “helps or is complicit” in an abortion and, if they win the case, collect $ 10,000.
Conservative Judge Brett Kavanaugh, one of the five justices who allowed the regulations to take effect, suggested that the unusual scheme for applying the law should be open to challenge in court. “Here a lagoon has been used and exploited [legal]”, And the question that the Supreme Court must answer is whether they should close it, explained the magistrate. Recalling the beginning of a 1908 High Court ruling, Kavanaugh, nominated for the job by former President Donald Trump, said they should probably shut it down. Judge Amy Coney Barrett also hinted that she would distance herself from her block, considering that the law is designed to prevent abortion providers from presenting a “full constitutional defense” in court.
The Attorney General of the United States, Elizabeth Prelogar, representing the Department of Justice, warned during the hearing that “no constitutional right is secure” if the judges allow Texas law to be maintained, a regulation that “clearly violates the precedents ”Of the High Court. Of the nine justices, five are conservatives, including the three appointed by Trump during his administration. Chief Justice John Roberts does not have such a strong line, and in voting on whether or not to block Texas law, he joined the position of the three progressive justices. The objective of the norm “seems to be to exclude the State from the responsibility of implementing and enforcing the law,” he argued then.
Behind the Capitol and in front of the Supreme, a small group, mostly cheerful young women, dressed in red, this morning raised heart-shaped balloons that matched their neat outfits. “We are the pro-life generation,” read their banners. A few feet away, scattered around the facade, a small handful of men and women, wearing jeans and thick jackets to withstand the Washingtonian cold, were silent with serious faces. They represented those who fear that a right conquered half a century ago will be taken away from them. “What about my heartbeat?” Read a poster. In the background, some loudspeakers broadcast what was happening inside the court: the judges argued, once again, about the interruption of the pregnancy.
Texas abortion clinics have stopped performing the procedures once heart activity is detected. If they break the law, they risk hefty fines. The consequence has been that women who want to interrupt their pregnancy and have a good economic situation, have traveled to other States. The most vulnerable must continue their pregnancies or find other, generally dangerous, ways to end them.
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Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.