Texas law bans nearly all abortions there, Supreme Court lets it stand. What happened?

People participate in "Bans Off Our Bodies!", a performance protest in front of the San Pedro Playhouse in San Antonio, Texas, on September 1, 2021. The demonstration is in response to SB8, a new Texas state law that bans abortion after as six weeks into pregnancy. Photo by Carlos Kosienski/Sipa USA.

The Supreme Court on Wednesday night explained why it decided not to block a Texas law banning abortions at around six weeks from going into effect. In a one-paragraph statement, the court’s five most conservative justices said while there are “serious questions” about the law’s constitutionality, the court didn’t know how to stop it from going into effect. Chief Justice John Roberts joined the liberal justices in dissent.

It means for now, Texas has ended nearly all abortions in the state, since most women don’t know they’re pregnant at six weeks. This could also signal that the now very conservative Supreme Court is ready to end the decades-old precedent set in Roe v. Wade, which guaranteed women a constitutional right to abortion.

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