In a roller coaster ride of legal wrangling in Texas since the Supreme Court of the United States sent the issue of the legalization of abortion back to the states where it belongs, things have changed dramatically. First a state court in Houston issued a restraining order regarding an old Texas law that banned abortion outright. That allowed abortions to take place up to six weeks into a pregnancy. Now, the Texas Supreme Court has put a 1920’s law in place, civilly but not criminally, at least for the time-being.
If you were a woman in Texas trying to get an abortion, you would have had to move fast, since it’s been a matter of days between each major change in what is legal and what is not. State Attorney General Ken Paxton asked the Texas Supreme Court to put the Houston court’s order on hold, and they agreed. Paxton tweeted: “Thanks to my appeal, SCOTX has slapped down the abortion providers and the district court carrying their water. Our state’s pre-Roe statutes banning abortion in Texas are 100% good law. Litigation continues, but I’ll keep winning for Texas’s unborn babies.”
As Attorney General Paxton said, litigation isn’t over and a hearing is still set for July 12, reports the New York Times. Paxton’s position is that in Texas, a 1925 law that had outlawed abortions and punished those who performed them with possible prison time was triggered when Roe was overturned.
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The Supreme Court ruling sent the issue of the legality of abortion back to states that may have been ill-prepared to handle it yet, even though they all got over a month’s head start because the draft version of the final order was leaked. Or maybe both sides of the debate were ready, given how fast the legal documents have been produced. Will this debate ever end?