(PresidentialWire.com)- On Wednesday, the Supreme Court denied to issue an emergency stay on Texas’ restrictive abortion law. One day later, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she plans to do something about it.
On Thursday, Pelosi said the House of Representatives would take a vote later in September on a bill that would ultimately protect women’s right to have an abortion in any part of the country. By codifying the right to abortion through a law passed in Congress, states wouldn’t have the ability to pass their own restrictive laws that could or could not be challenged in the Supreme Court.
Texas’ law, which went into effect on Wednesday, bans all abortions once a medical professional can detect a fetal heartbeat. That typically occurs around six weeks of pregnancy, at a time when some women don’t even know they are pregnant yet.
Plaintiffs had filed an emergency request to block enforcement of Texas’ law, but the 5-4 conservative majority allowed it to take effect. Chief Justice John Roberts, a conservative, sided with the court’s three liberal justices, but it wasn’t enough to block the law from taking effect.
Texas’ law is considered the most restrictive abortion law in the country. Not only does it ban almost every abortion after six weeks of pregnancy, it doesn’t provide any exemption for incest or rape. It only allows abortions for “medical emergencies.”
Pelosi is trying to make sure that this doesn’t happen again. She said the House would vote on the bill once the lower chamber returns from its summer recess.
In a statement, she said:
“Upon our return, the House will bring up Congresswoman Judy Chu’s Women’s Health Protection Act to enshrine into law reproductive health care for all women across America. The Supreme Court’s cowardly, dark-of-night decision to uphold a flagrantly unconstitutional assault on women’s rights and health is staggering.”
If passed in the House — and then eventually the Senate and signed by President Joe Biden — the bill would guarantee a woman’s right to get an abortion, no matter where she lived.
It would ultimately codify many of the protections that were laid out in the 1973 landmark Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision, which made abortions legal throughout the United States.
The bill would make it a statutory right to get or perform an abortion, and wouldn’t have any restrictions that set aside abortion care. Instead of each state having the right to pass different abortion laws, this bill would create a federal standard and protections.
Even if the bill were to pass through the House, though, it would of course face a potential major obstacle in the Senate. There is a 50-50 split between Democrats and Republicans there, and 60 votes would be needed to pass the bill.
There’s no way for Democrats to get around the filibuster with the use of budget reconciliation, either. So, they’d just have to hope they could get at least 10 Republicans to side with them.