UNITED STATES NEWS

Texas Supreme Court rejects challenge to state’s abortion law over medical exceptions

May 31, 2024, 7:48 AM

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The Texas Supreme Court on Friday rejected a challenge to one of the most restrictive abortion bans in the U.S. following a lawsuit by women who had serious pregnancy complications.

The ruling from the court, whose nine justices are all elected Republicans, is the latest decision to uphold Texas’ abortion ban, which critics say does not offer enough clarity over when exceptions are allowed.

“Texas law permits a life-saving abortion,” the court wrote in the order signed by Republican Justice Jane Bland.

Last summer, state District Judge Jessica Mangrum had granted a temporary injunction preventing Texas from enforcing the ban against doctors who in their “good faith judgment” ended a pregnancy that they determined was unsafe because of complications. But that was immediately blocked by an appeal from the Texas attorney general’s office to the state’s Supreme Court.

The lawsuit filed in March 2023 didn’t seek to repeal Texas’ abortion ban, but instead aimed to force more clarity on when exceptions are allowed.

It argued that exemptions under the law, which allows an abortion to save a mother’s life or prevent the impairment of a major bodily function, are written too vaguely and create confusion among doctors, who were turning away some pregnant women experiencing health complications because they feared repercussions.

The plaintiffs said the abortion ban has made medical professionals wary of facing liability if the state does not consider the situation a medical emergency.

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Stengle reported from Dallas.

United States News

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Texas Supreme Court rejects challenge to state’s abortion law over medical exceptions