Federal judge temporarily bars Texas from enforcing abortion law

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A federal judge on Wednesday temporarily blocked Texas from enforcing the controversial abortion ban that bars the process as early as six weeks into being pregnant.  

Judge Robert L. Pitman has granted the Department of Justice’s movement for a brief restraining order because the constitutionality of the law is additional litigated within the courts.

“From the moment S.B. 8 went into effect, women have been unlawfully prevented from exercising control over their lives in ways that are protected by the Constitution,” the order reads. “That other courts may find a way to avoid this conclusion is theirs to decide; this Court will not sanction one more day of this offensive deprivation of such an important right.”

Pitman has additionally denied the state’s movement to dismiss the Justice Department’s lawsuit difficult the law.

In his scathing 113-page ruling, Pitman takes the constitutionality of the Texas law head-on, writing that it’s “substantially likely” that courts will discover that S.B. 8 violates the Fourteenth Amendment. Citing a number of feedback and testimonies from clinicians and sufferers alike, the judge dominated the law locations an “undue burden” on ladies searching for abortion in Texas and thus violates their rights.

“If this situation does not constitute an undue burden,” because the State of Texas argues, “it is hard to imagine what would,” Pitman added. 

The judge concludes such a burden has already and can proceed to trigger “irreparable harm” to these searching for abortions.



“People seeking abortions face irreparable harm when they are unable to access abortions; these individuals are entitled to access to abortions under the U.S. Constitution; S.B. 8 prevents access to abortion,” the Court explains, ruling in favor of granting the Department of Justice’s request for a brief pause within the law’s enforcement. 

The state of Texas filed discover with the court docket that it plans to enchantment Wednesday’s ruling to the fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Texas’ abortion law, which went into impact in September, is among the many nation’s most restrictive. In addition to outlawing abortion as soon as embryonic cardiac exercise is detected, which may occur as early as six weeks right into a being pregnant — earlier than many ladies know they’re pregnant — the measure permits personal residents to convey civil lawsuits in opposition to anybody who supplies an abortion after that time or helps a lady entry the process, akin to a buddy who drives a lady to acquire an abortion, or clinic employees. Those present in violation of the law are required to pay at the least $10,000 to the one that efficiently introduced the swimsuit.

Pitman has ordered the state of Texas to inform all state judges and state court docket staff impacted by Wednesday’s determination and to “publish this preliminary injunction on all of its public-facing court websites with a visible, easy-to-understand instruction to the public that S.B. 8 lawsuits will not be accepted by Texas courts.”

In a press release, Planned Parenthood stated it was “grateful” for the ruling, and that it will proceed to battle the ban in court docket. 

“While this fight is far from over, we are hopeful that the court’s order blocking S.B. 8 will allow Texas abortion providers to resume services as soon as possible,” stated Alexis McGill Johnson, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood, in a press release.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki known as the ruling “an important step forward toward restoring the constitutional rights of women across the state of Texas.” In a press release she stated, “The fight has only just begun, both in Texas and in many states across this country where women’s rights are currently under attack.”

The Justice Department sued Texas on September 9, eight days after the law went into impact, and sought a brief freeze in opposition to S.B. 8. The division argued throughout an October 1 listening to that the measure violates the U.S. structure and contradicts longstanding U.S. Supreme Court precedent that protects “pre-viability abortions.” 

In a press release Wednesday night time, Attorney General Merrick Garland praised the ruling, saying it’s a “victory for women in Texas and for the rule of law.” Garland stated the Justice Department will “continue to protect constitutional rights against all who would seek to undermine them.”

White House chief of employees Ron Klain tweeted Wednesday that Pittman’s ruling is a “big win for the Biden administration — and the constitution — in federal court tonight.” President Biden final month known as the law “extreme” and stated it “blatantly violates the constitutional right established under Roe v. Wade and upheld as precedent for nearly half a century.”

The U.S. Supreme Court declined to cease the law from going into impact, however has not dominated on its constitutionality.

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