Legal challenge to TX abortion law 'effectively over,' say clinics after state Supreme Court ruling

"Nothing left, this case is effectively over with respect to our challenge to the abortion ban" – Center for Reproductive Rights

Updated: March 11, 2022 - 6:19pm

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The Texas Supreme Court on Friday shut down abortion clinics' legal challenge to the state's so-called "heartbeat" act in a ruling upholding the law.

The court found that state licensing boards neither directly nor indirectly enforce the abortion law and therefore cannot be sued to stop its restrictions, reported KVUE, a local ABC affiliate.

The Texas abortion providers had already made clear their legal options were limited.

"There is nothing left, this case is effectively over with respect to our challenge to the abortion ban," said Marc Hearron, attorney for the Center for Reproductive Rights, which led the legal challenge against the Texas abortion law, according to The Associated Press.

The law bans most abortions after ultrasound detects what some lawmakers call a fetal "heartbeat," which can come as early as six weeks into pregnancy.

The abortion providers have already brought their case to the U.S. Supreme Court, which in December ruled against most of their arguments. However, the high court allowed a narrow challenge regarding state licensing boards to continue and sent it back to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, KVUE reported.

The 5th Circuit, which had previously blocked the law, sent the case to the Texas Supreme Court.