The Supreme Court has denied a request from abortion providers to allow them to challenge the law in federal court.
Context: The state of Texas’s highest court is currently weighing a procedural question that relates to the enforcement of the law.
Texas abortion providers asked the Supreme Court to allow litigation in federal court to move forward simultaneously. The court denied that request.
The court had previously allowed the lawsuit by the providers to proceed, albeit in a limited fashion.
The previous ruling blocked a full-scale challenge to the law, eliminating court clerks from litigation but allowing the litigation against licensing officials, like the head of the state medical board to proceed.
What this means: The ruling was unsigned and a reason for the decision was not given.
However, after the initial ruling, the court expedited the case back to the Fifth Circuit. The circuit could have sent the case back to the district court for proceedings against the licensing officials.
Instead, the circuit scheduled arguments on a motion to refer the case to the state Supreme Court to determine if the licensing officials were actually involved.
As a result, the providers returned to the Supreme Court to ask the court to force the circuit to immediately transfer the case back to the district court so litigation against the licensors could continue.
The circuit granted the state’s request to send the case to the state Supreme Court for determination.