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No action from Fifth Circuit yet

HB2 is still enjoined.

The Texas attorney general’s office is seeking an emergency stay, asking the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to reverse U.S. District Judge Lee Yeakel’s ruling against abortion regulations in House Bill 2.

Beginning Tuesday, abortion providers would have been required to obtain hospital admitting privileges within 30 miles of the abortion facility and follow federal standards for the administration of abortion-inducing drugs. Yeakel ruled that the hospital privileges requirement was unconstitutional because it created an undue burden on women without serving a rational purpose. He also said drug-induced abortions could be performed following a common evidence-based regimen if the physician believed it was safer for the patient.

In its request, the state says the district court took an “extraordinary step” by ruling that the provisions caused an undue burden on women seeking abortion, as 90 percent of patients would still be able to secure an abortion within 100 miles of their residence. The state calls the move “so aggressive that it ignores those concessions and sweeps more broadly than even the plaintiffs were willing to argue.” It calls for an emergency stay by Tuesday night.

The state also asks that the 5th Circuit expedite the briefing schedule so a hearing can be held in January to reconsider the constitutionality of the provisions.

Far as I can tell, there were no orders issued by the court yesterday, so HB2 is still mostly blocked. I’m a little surprised, I was expecting a ruling from them – to be specific, I was expecting them to swoop in and give the state everything it wanted. Not complaining, but I still feel like it’s just delaying the inevitable. But then, every day that HB2 is not in effect is a good day, so I’ll take what I can. We’ll see what today brings.

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