DOJ To Ask Supreme Court To Block Texas’ Pro-Life Law
Marches Held Nationwide In Support Of Reproductive Rights WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 02: Women rights activists participate in the annual Women’s March as they pass by the U.S. Supreme Court October 2, 2021 in Washington, DC. The annual march returns to Washington for the fifth time with a focus on fighting for abortion rights. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images) Alex Wong / Staff via Getty Images
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The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) is planning to ask the Supreme Court to block Texas’ pro-life law after a federal appeals court ruled that the law could remain in effect, per reports.

As The Washington Post reported:

“The Justice Department intends to ask the Supreme Court to vacate the Fifth Circuit’s stay of the preliminary injunction against Texas Senate Bill 8,” Justice Department spokesman Anthony Coley said in a brief statement Friday.

The DOJ reportedly did not specifically say when it will formally make its request to the court.

The reports about the DOJ’s plans are the latest development in a back-and-forth legal battle between the Biden administration and the state of Texas regarding the pro-life measure.

As The Daily Wire reported, “On Thursday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit ruled against the Biden administration Justice Department, asserting that Texas’ heartbeat abortion law can remain in place.”

“The court issued a 2–1 order siding with the state of Texas, refusing the Justice Department’s request to reinstate an earlier court ruling that had blocked enforcement of the law. The order was backed by Judges James C. Ho, who was nominated by Donald Trump, and Catharina Haynes, who was nominated by George W. Bush. Judge Carl E. Stewart, a nominee of Bill Clinton, dissented,” National Review reported, adding, “Thursday’s decision comes after the same panel last week issued a temporary decision to reinstate the law after a federal judge in Austin temporarily halted the ban.”

The Daily Wire added:

After the law was passed in Texas, U.S. District Judge Robert Pitman approved the Biden administration’s request to temporarily block the law; he also refused permission for Texas to pause his ruling pending appeal. Pitman wrote, “From the moment S.B. 8 went into effect, women have been unlawfully prevented from exercising control over their own lives in ways that are protected by the Constitution. … This Court will not sanction one more day of this offensive deprivation of such an important right.”

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton tweeted, “We disagree with the Court’s decision and have already taken steps to immediately appeal it to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. The sanctity of human life is, and will always be, a top priority for me.”

Following Pitman’s ruling, the Fifth Circuit Court reinstated the law pending further review.

The Supreme Court previously refused to block the law and notably didn’t rule on the constitutionality of it when it did so. Rather, it made its decision based on specifics of the law’s enforcement mechanism.

As The Daily Wire reported:

The court’s conservative majority rejected the abortion providers’ request because of the law’s enforcement mechanism, which separates it from “heartbeat” laws passed in other states. The law deputizes private citizens, granting them standing to file lawsuits against violating abortion providers rather than authorizing state agents to police them. The court dismissed the request, which names every state court judge and clerk as defendants, based on procedural grounds.

“In reaching this conclusion, we stress that we do not purport to resolve definitively any jurisdictional or substantive claim in the applicants’ lawsuit. In particular, this order is not based on any conclusion about the constitutionality of Texas’s law, and in no way limits other procedurally proper challenges to the Texas law, including in Texas state courts,” the opinion states.

Texas’ Heartbeat Act effectively outlaws abortion after the sixth week of pregnancy, when fetal cardiac activity can be detected. As The Daily Wire previously reported, “The Texas law allows citizens to sue abortion providers and those who ‘aid and abet’ illegal procedures for a financial reward if the lawsuit is successful.”

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