A judge has temporarily blocked the new Texas law banning abortion, saying it is unconstitutional.
This comes after the law – which prohibits abortion in most cases after 6 weeks and allows people to sue those who help facilitate an abortion – was challenged by the Supreme Court last month, preventing it to kick in.
US District Court Judge Robert Pitman was scathing about the “unprecedented and aggressive” law, which he said, “unlawfully prevented women from exercising control over their lives.”
“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,” he wrote, according to Sky News.
Attorneys from the justice department have described the ban as an “unprecedented scheme of vigilante justice.”
Most likely, the decision will be challenged right away in the court of appeals, which previously supported the law.
🇺🇸 💚 A federal judge has granted @TheJusticeDept’s request to halt enforcement of draconian #Texas #abortion law, ruling that the law should be put on hold as the legal battle over the statute makes its way through the federal courts #abortionrights https://t.co/EhkWaII8hu
— Erika Guevara-Rosas (@ErikaGuevaraR) October 7, 2021
Meanwhile, pro-choice activists have celebrated the ruling, which is the first to do some damage to the new law.
In a statement, women’s reproductive health charity Planned Parenthood said:
“It’s been 36 days since Texas deprived its citizens of their constitutional right to abortion. The relief granted by the court today is overdue. We will continue fighting this ban in court, until we are certain that Texans’ ability to access abortion is protected.”
— Bob Garrett (@RobertTGarrett) October 7, 2021
Others have warned people not to get overconfident, as many doctors would still refuse to perform abortions out of fear of being prosecuted eventually.
By the way, those who perform and help with #abortion in Texas are still liable to lawsuits under the Heartbeat bill today; the statute is still in effect.
Read the judge's order carefully.
— Fr. Frank Pavone (@frfrankpavone) October 7, 2021
Regarding the current situation, White House press secretary said “the fight has only just begun, both in Texas and in many states across this country where women’s rights are currently under attack.”
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