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Federal judge issues order blocking Texas’ 6-week abortion ban

By Tierney Sneed, CNN

A federal judge in Texas issued an order Wednesday blocking the state’s six-week abortion ban.

US District Judge Robert Pitman’s order is a victory for abortion rights proponents, who had seen other attempts to block the law stymied by the ban’s novel design. It may, however, be only a temporary victory.

At a hearing Friday, a lawyer from the Texas attorney general’s office made clear that the state would appeal such an order to the 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals if it were granted.

That appeals court — perhaps the most conservative in the country — previously rejected a request from clinics that it block the law, as did the US Supreme Court.

In a recent court filing, an organization that runs several clinics in the state said that it would resume providing abortions after six weeks if the judge issued an order blocking the law.

The Texas law bans abortions after fetal cardiac activity is detected — a point usually around six weeks into a pregnancy and often before a woman knows she is pregnant. It took effect on September 1 after the Supreme Court declined an emergency request to block it.

But while the law prevents access to abortions in violation of the Supreme Court’s landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, its novel structure has helped it in the courts.

Rather than task government officials with enforcing the ban, the Texas legislature deputized private citizens to bring state court litigation against any clinic that performs an abortion. Those who assist a person obtain an abortion that violates the ban can be targeted with state court litigation as well, under the law, which threatens damages of at least $10,000.

Because government officials aren’t tasked with implementing the law, Texas argues that there is no one that a court can preemptively enjoin, the way the courts would preemptively enjoin officials from implementing the usual types of abortion restrictions that impose criminal or administrative punishments.

When Attorney General Merrick Garland announced that the Justice Department was bringing a lawsuit of its own, he said that this “unprecedented” design seeks “to prevent women from exercising their constitutional rights by thwarting judicial review for as long as possible.”

With the exception of one doctor who wrote a Washington Post op-ed claiming he had performed an abortion that violated the ban, clinics say that they have been complying with the Texas law in the month it’s been in effect, forcing women to go out of state for the procedure if they’re more than six-weeks into their pregnancies. Planned Parenthood says its Oklahoma providers have seen a 133% increase in patients from Texas, while its providers in New Mexico have seen a 67% jump in patients from the Lone Star State.

In a court filing from the clinic organization Whole Woman’s Health, its president said that among the patients who have shown up their Texas clinics earlier than six weeks into their pregnancies or whom weren’t sure how far along they were, 56% had to be turned away because fetal cardiac activity was nonetheless detected.

This story is breaking and will be updated.

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  1. She is in college and doesn’t want to ruin her promising future.
    They had irresponsible or inebriated $ex.
    The father has no money.
    Mom is a addict and the kid ending up in foster care is inevitable.
    They are non-believers and the religious reasons are relevant to them.

    I’m sure there’s more reasons. But no matter how you feel banning it is mandating a person who made a mistake to pay for the rest of their life no matter their situation. It don’t really affect me so I don’t care either way.

  2. There is too many preventative measures available to use the “i’m not ready” excuse for killing a baby. Plan B, free condoms and abstinence if you’re “not ready”. The good part is if you have enough abortions you won’t be able to have kids anyway so win/win

  3. Abortions continue unabated all over the state. Only clinic obeying the law is Planned Parenthood because they draw so much public scrutiny. I have two friends who are OB-Gyn dox. They did a total of 12 since the law took effect. Abortion is no longer an issue. Its here to stay.

    1. You don’t know any doctors. Educated people don’t hang out with felon low^life’s like you. Your whole life is a figment of your own imagination.

        1. here’s an idea, why dont you come and call me religious filth to my face, dang, i keep forgetting that you’re nothing but a coward. here’s the difference between you and me, i will stand behind what i say because i wouldnt say it unless i believed it. you on the other hand are just a cowardly racist piece of trash. you threaten people regularly, yet you’ve never backed up any of them because you are a coward. you have no direction, you have no friends, you live off of the government at the tax payer’s expense but accuse everybody else of it. you’re so shallow that we can see right through you. i suspect you were molested a lot as a child, probably by a family member, that sound about right?

          1. No. You’re a coward and a punk. On top of that, you’re ignorant religious filth, a racist, a failed brick maker, and you cannot get pregnant so the abortion issue is none of your business. So sit down somewhere. madmike and nadodave are the only two maggots on this blog who regularly threaten people.

          2. Char Liar Dumbo lying again. I recall you were Mark Turner and threatened everyone with a baseball bat. But we all know Alberto is a big chicken.

      1. Once successfully fertilized it becomes a life. But that is not really the point, it is only ways for both sides to justify their opposition or approval. By the time a Mother realizes pregnancy and goes for the procedure a fetus is already formed. So the whole life or no life argument is moot.

      1. Then the Supreme Court could do an end run with the Mississippi case that’s currently on their docket. In the end abortions will continue unabated regardless.

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