Democrats said it would never happen — but it just did.
In a shocking move late Wednesday, the Supreme Court shot down a challenge to a Texas law that bans most abortions in the state as early as six weeks into a pregnancy, Fox News reports.
The high court’s 5–4 decision denying an emergency appeal on the case means the law out of Texas — said to be one of the strictest abortion bans in the nation — will remain enforceable, at least for now.
But as Fox notes, “the justices also suggested that their order likely isn’t the last word on whether the law can stand because other challenges to it can still be brought.”
“Heads in the sand”
Critics, including the court’s three liberal judges, have said the initial ruling, which came after a challenge by a pro-choice group, flies in the face of the precedent set back by Roe v. Wade back in 1973. According to NPR, Roe allowed abortions up until the point of “fetal viability, usually between 22 and 24 weeks of pregnancy.”
“Presented with an application to enjoin a flagrantly unconstitutional law engineered to prohibit women from exercising their constitutional rights and evade judicial scrutiny, a majority of Justices have opted to bury their heads in the sand,” Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote in a scathing dissent this week, according to Fox.
Sotomayor and the two other left-leaning justices on the SCOTUS were joined in their opposition to the ruling by Chief Justice John Roberts, Fox reported.
Dems promise action
But despite their objections, the abortion ban in Texas will remain. As it stands, the law bars abortion procedures after the point at which a heartbeat can be detected in the developing fetus.
According to Breitbart, the law allows private citizens to sue abortion providers for performing the procedure past that point.
It’s a notion that hasn’t sat well with Democrat leaders like President Joe Biden, who called the justices’ decision “an unprecedented assault on a woman’s constitutional rights.”
According to Breitbart, the president said that he is “directing that Council and the Office of the White House Counsel to launch a whole-of-government effort to respond to this [SCOTUS] decision.” Biden, the avowed Catholic, went on to call on the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) to challenge the Texas law in court.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), another avowed Catholic, has also promised action. “Upon our return, the House will bring up congresswoman Judy Chu’s Women’s Health Protection Act to enshrine into law reproductive health care for all women across America,” she vowed this week, according to Breitbart. For now, however, the law is on the books, marking a huge win for life.