The latest attempt comes three days after the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reinstated the Texas pro-life law which an Obama-appointed judge last week suspended.
The days ahead could now be key in determining the immediate future of the law known as Senate Bill 8, including whether there is another attempt to have the U.S. Supreme Court weigh in.
The law bans abortions in Texas once cardiac activity is detected which is usually at six weeks. Although other GOP-controlled states have had similar early bans on abortions blocked by courts, the Texas law has proved durable because the state offloads enforcement solely onto private citizens, who can collect at least $10,000 in damages if they successfully sue abortion providers.
In wording that seemed to be a message to the Supreme Court, the Justice Department raised the specter that if allowed to stand, the legal structure created in enacting the law could be used to circumvent even the Supreme Court’s rulings in 2008 and 2010 on gun rights and campaign financing.
It is not clear when the 5th Circuit will decide whether to extend what is currently a temporary order allowing the Texas law to stand.
The Biden administration sued Texas over the law last month after it went into effect. Texas officials have defended the restrictions, which were signed by Republican Gov. Greg Abbott in May and say they have no ability to stop private individuals from bringing lawsuits.