The Supreme Court will hear arguments Monday in two challenges to a Texas law banning most abortions in the country after six weeks of pregnancy. Judges will examine whether abortion practitioners in the state and the Biden administration have the right to challenge a law that is supposed to evade review in federal court.
Next month, judges in a separate case challenging Mississippi’s 15-week ban will examine the more fundamental question of whether to overturn Roe v. Wade’s 1973 decision, which enforced the constitutional right to abortion.
The court allowed the Texas law to take effect Sept. 1 with a heavily split 5 to 4 ruling. Monday’s arguments will give judges a chance to look again to see if federal courts have the power to block a law that nearly eliminated abortions in the state .
Where can I listen?
The New York Times will stream the oral arguments and provide a live broadcast of the debates when they begin at 10 a.m. East. The first argument, in the case of abortion practitioners, is expected to last one hour, but will most likely last longer. The second argument in the challenge filed by the Biden administration will begin shortly after the completion of the first. It is also scheduled to last one hour.
What are the key arguments?
Both opponents said the law runs counter to Roe v. Wade, which bans states banning abortion before the fetus survives, or about 23 weeks. They urged judges not to allow Texas to effectively nullify the right to abortion in the state by authorizing members of the public to sue abortion providers and encouraging them with a minimum reward of $ 10,000 if they win.
Officials in Texas said neither the federal government nor the bidders are eligible for the lawsuit. The right way to challenge the law, in their opinion, is for abortion providers to violate it, sue them in a state court and present constitutional or other arguments in defense.
Why is this important?
The practical consequences of a court judgment can be enormous. Abortion clinics in Texas are discouraging patients seeking the procedure and forcing those who have the financial means to travel to other states to have an abortion.
If the court refuses to block Texas law, similar states are likely to be adopted by other states run by Republican-controlled legislators. It is possible that Democrat-led countries will pass similar laws to restrict other constitutional rights, in areas such as arms control and campaign finance.
Arguments are likely to also hint at where the judges are going when considering Roe’s fate in the Mississippi case next month.
The court’s call for an abolition – after the law allowed it to take effect exactly two months ago – suggests something is going on among judges, he said. Mary Ziegler, Professor of Law at Florida State University. “Someone who wasn’t on the fence is probably on the fence again,” she said.
Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh, who previously voted that the law could be continued, is the most likely candidate to switch sides, legal experts say.