Abortions may resume in Texas after a judge blocks the pre-Roe v. Wade

June 28 (Reuters) – Abortions can resume in Texas after a judge on Tuesday blocked officials from enforcing a nearly century-old ban that the state’s Republican attorney general said was back in effect after the Supreme Court of the United States annulled the constitutional right to procedure throughout the country.

Judge Christine Weems’ temporary restraining order in Harris County came in a last-ditch attempt by abortion providers to resume services after the US Supreme Court on Friday reversed the Roe ruling. v. Wade in 1973 that guaranteed the right of women to have an abortion.

The order allows clinics to resume services, for now, in a state where abortion was already severely restricted to only up to six weeks of pregnancy under a Texas law that took effect in September and that the U.S. Supreme Court United refused to block.

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“Every hour that abortion is accessible in Texas is a victory,” Marc Hearron, an attorney for abortion providers at the Center for Reproductive Rights, said in a statement.

Another hearing is scheduled for July 12. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s office did not respond to a request for comment.

The decision came amid a series of litigation in state courts by abortion advocacy groups seeking to curb or stop Republican-backed restrictions on women’s ability to terminate pregnancies that are now taking effect or are about to end. about to do so in 22 states. read more

Those states include 13 that, like Texas, have enacted so-called “trigger” laws designed to take effect if Roe v. Wade, according to the Guttmacher Institute, an abortion rights advocacy research group.

Following the Supreme Court decision, federal courts have been lifting orders blocking Republican-backed abortion restrictions. On Tuesday, a federal appeals court cleared the way for a six-week ban to go into effect in Tennessee.

Paxton, in a notice issued after the US Supreme Court ruled, said the state’s 2021 trigger ban, which bans abortions almost entirely, would not take effect immediately. Providers say that could take two months or more.

But Paxton said prosecutors could choose to immediately file criminal charges against abortion providers based on a different, older statute that had not applied while Roe v. Wade was on the books, but that was still Texas law.

Texas abortion providers in a lawsuit filed Monday argued that the 1925 ban had been repealed and conflicted with the most recent ban the Republican-dominated legislature passed.

The suit was filed on the same day that judges in Louisiana and Utah blocked officials from enforcing their states’ “trigger” bans, and abortion providers in Idaho, Kentucky and Mississippi sued for relief. Similary.

The Oklahoma Supreme Court, in an 8-1 decision, on Monday rejected a request by providers to block the implementation of a near total ban on abortions that took effect in May, ahead of the US Supreme Court’s ruling. ., but after a preview version was leaked.

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Reporting by Nate Raymond in Boston Editing by Bill Berkrot

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.


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