Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals judges on Friday heard oral arguments in three same-sex marriage cases from Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas, with dozens of residents from all three states lining up as early as 4:30 a.m. to secure seats inside the New Orleans courtroom.
At stake is the question of whether Texas’ remaining legal abortion clinics—16 currently operate in the state, down from 41 a little more than 18 months ago—will be allowed to stay open without making costly renovations or leasing new facilities to comply with hospital-like standards imposed by state lawmakers in 2013.
The conservative Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals considers marriage equality bans in Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi the same day the Roberts Court considers stepping into the fray.
Texas’ omnibus anti-abortion access law, which in part requires abortion providers to operate as mini-hospitals, will return to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals this week.
Staff members at the last remaining legal abortion clinic in the Rio Grande Valley have been repeatedly left without a job in the wake of flip-flopping court decisions.
A series of orders from the Roberts Court in both voting and abortion rights cases is setting the stage for a future battle over the role of the federal courts in checking lawmaker bias.
Attorneys for the State of Texas told the Roberts Court that closing all but eight clinics in the state is an “inconvenience” but not an undue burden on abortion rights.
The ongoing federal challenge to Texas’ omnibus anti-abortion law made its way to the nation’s highest court on Monday evening, with abortion providers asking Justice Antonin Scalia to put an appeals court decision on hold while their case makes its way through the judicial system.
Thursday’s ruling letting the ambulatory surgical center provisions of HB 2 take effect demonstrates the meaninglessness of the “undue burden” standard in the Fifth Circuit.
Attorneys for the State of Mississippi have asked the full panel of judges for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit to consider whether closing the only abortion clinic in the state unduly burdens abortion rights.