Texas wins bid to reinstate abortion law challenged by Biden administration By Reuters

Texas wins bid to reinstate abortion law challenged by Biden administration By Reuters


© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A supporter of reproductive rights holds a sign outside the Texas State Capitol building during the nationwide Women’s March, held after Texas rolled out a near-total ban on abortion procedures and access to abortion-inducing medications, in A


By Jan Wolfe and Sarah N. Lynch

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A U.S. appeals court on Friday temporarily reinstated Texas’s near-total ban on abortion, dealing a setback to abortion rights advocates and the Biden administration.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, an intermediate appeals court, said it was putting on hold a lower court ruling from Oct. 6 that blocked the abortion law.

The administrative stay from the Fifth Circuit, a conservative-leaning appeals court, came in a lawsuit brought by the U.S. Justice Department on Sept. 9. The purpose of the administrative stay is to give the court time to determine whether to issue a more permanent ruling.

The Texas abortion law, which took effect on Sept. 1, bans abortions at around six weeks of pregnancy.

The law makes no exceptions for pregnancies caused by rape or incest. It also lets ordinary citizens enforce the ban, rewarding them at least $10,000 if they successfully sue anyone who helped provide an abortion after fetal cardiac activity is detected. Critics of the law have said this provision enables people to act as anti-abortion bounty hunters.

U.S. District Judge Robert Pitman in Austin on Wednesday temporarily blocked the abortion ban while litigation over its legality continues.

The Justice Department has argued that the law impedes women from exercising their constitutional right to terminate a pregnancy that was recognized in the Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, which legalized abortion nationwide. The department also argued that the law improperly interferes with the operations of the federal government to provide abortion-related services.

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