Texas bill virtually banning abortion goes into effect
A sweeping pro-life law that bans abortions as early as six weeks gestation went into effect in Texas Wednesday as the judicial branch has rejected challenges to the measure from abortion providers and advocacy groups.
Senate Bill 8, signed into law by Texas’ Republican Gov. Greg Abbott in May, went into effect early morning Wednesday. The bill bans abortions after a fetal heartbeat can be detected, usually at around six weeks gestation. It also allows individuals to take civil action against anyone who “performs and induces an abortion” or “knowingly engages in conduct that aids or abets the performance or inducement of an abortion, including paying for or reimbursing the costs of abortion through insurance or otherwise.”
On the 13th of July, nearly two months after Abbott signed the legislation, a group of abortion providers and pro-abortion nonprofit organizations filed a lawsuit seeking to block the measure from becoming law.
The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals canceled a hearing that was set for Monday. The Texas Tribune reported that twenty abortion providers sought to convince a court in Austin to block the law from taking effect.
Pro-abortion groups filed emergency motions with the 5th Circuit, asking the appellate court to either block the law from taking effect or send the case back to the district court. The appellate court denied the requests.