The Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) ruled Friday that abortion providers in the state of Texas will be able to sue the state over the astringent abortion ban set in place, but the law itself will be allowed to stand.
Since September, abortions have declined by 50 percent in the Lone Star State, due to the implementation of Texas Senate Bill 8 (SB 8), also known as the Texas “Heartbeat Bill.” SB 8 stipulates that an abortion may not be performed in Texas once a fetal heartbeat has been detected, which is generally around the sixth week of pregnancy.
Friday’s ruling is a major win for proponents of prolife legislation, especially in light of the current SCOTUS challenge to Roe v. Wade in the case of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which seeks to ban abortions after the 15th week of pregnancy in the state of Mississippi.
Roe v. Wade, which was the SCOTUS ruling from 1973 that legalized abortion across America, has never been significantly challenged…until now. Since 1973, more than 62 million infants have been terminated in the womb in the United States, according to Life News. Last week, SCOTUS heard oral arguments in the Dobbs v. Jackson case.
Justice Clarence Thomas asked one of the pro-abortion lawyers the following: “Would you specifically tell me, specifically state what the right is, is it specifically abortion? Is it liberty? Is it autonomy? Is it privacy?”
Interestingly, Texas’ groundbreaking pro-life Heartbeat Bill seems to have paved the way for other states to take abortion cases before SCOTUS, drawing criticism from pro-abortion advocates who decry a “woman’s right” to terminate the life of unborn children. While Friday’s ruling still allows for abortion providers to sue Texas over the abortion ban, the fact that the ban itself is being allowed to stand begs the question of what legal standing will abortion providers have if they do sue.
In response to the recent surge of prolife victories and challenges to Roe v. Wade in the legal realm, Democrat Gov. Gavin Newsom has vowed to make California a “sanctuary state” for those seeking abortions. “We’ll be a sanctuary,” Newsom stated during an interview last week, according to Fox News. However, if Roe v. Wade were to be theoretically overturned, California would likely be among a handful of blue states that would aggressively resist the ruling.
Texas’ strong stance against abortion, as well as SCOTUS’ unflinching ruling on Friday to allow the law to remain in effect, has stirred excitement among prolife advocates, and dread among pro-abortion proponents. The possibility of nationwide change regarding abortion laws is very real, but will likely result in an intense legal process in the courts preceding any review of Roe v. Wade itself.