Woman who sued Texas for abortion leaves state

After the Supreme Court of Texas (SCOTX) issued an administrative stay on a lower court’s ruling that would have allowed a Texas woman to receive an abortion, she has left the state.

“After a week of legal whiplash and threats of prosecution from Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, Kate Cox has been forced to leave Texas to get healthcare outside of the state,” the Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR) said in a statement.

“This past week of legal limbo has been hellish for Kate,” said Nancy Northup, president and CEO of the CRR. “Her health is on the line. She’s been in and out of the emergency room and she couldn’t wait any longer.”

The CRR said in its initial announcement of the lawsuit that Cox “needs urgent abortion care due to a lethal fetal diagnosis and threats to her life, health, and fertility from continuing the pregnancy.”

“Kate Cox needs an abortion, and she needs it now,” states the filing in Cox v. State of Texas.

Judge Maya Guerra Gamble of the 459th Civil District Court held an emergency hearing where she granted a temporary restraining order (TRO) against the State of Texas from enforcing its pro-life laws.

Gamble stated that not allowing an abortion to take place in this case would be “shocking” and a “miscarriage of justice” for the fact that Cox wants to be a mother and is experiencing medical complications with her current pregnancy.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton soon responded with a letter addressed to three different Texas hospitals asserting that performing an abortion on Cox could still result in criminal and civil penalties despite the TRO.

SCOTX then followed with its own order, issuing an administrative stay on the lower court’s TRO to block its implementation while the lawsuit remains pending.

In February, an Obama-appointed judge for the Western District of Texas Austin Division ruled that Texas can no longer prosecute organizations that facilitate out-of-state abortions.

The decision from U.S. District Judge Robert Pitman stated that “there is no plausible construction of the statute that allows the Attorney General or local prosecutor to penalize out-of-state abortions.”

The Human Life Protection Act, commonly known as the “trigger ban” because it was set to take effect 30 days after the U.S. Supreme Court’s judgment in Dobbs v. Jackson, does “not regulate abortions that take place out of the State of Texas and cannot even be arguably read to do so,” according to Pitman.

“In other words, if an abortion takes place outside of Texas, a plausible (albeit unlikely) construction of the statute authorizes prosecution for ‘furnishing the means’ of that abortion if that ‘furnishing’ takes place in Texas.”

Dan Butcher

Dan Butcher (aka HP Pundit) is not a Democrat or Republican. He is a free thinking independent bringing you news and commentary with a dose of much needed common sense.

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