Patterico's Pontifications

10/7/2021

Federal Judge Enjoins Texas Abortion Law; Also: Texas Abortion Law Enjoined by Federal Judge

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:29 am



Texas’s heartbeat abortion law, with its rather bizarre enforcement mechanism, has been enjoined by a federal judge. Also, a federal judge has enjoined Texas’s abortion law. Ed Whelan noticed something odd about the first two paragraphs, which contained an odd feature that was brought to my attention by Ed Whelan. See if you can spot the problem. Read the very first two paragraphs:

Screen Shot 2021-10-07 at 8.37.36 AM

If you’re stumped, click through to Whelan’s tweet about it.

Oops. That is not a good sign in a judicial opinion. Did this guy not read the opinion over before putting it out?

Whoops. This is a bad sign in an opinion written by a judge. Did the jurist not bother to read it before he published it?

The judge issued a new opinion correcting the defect I have been mocking in this post. But the first corrected version still had this error:

As for the content, my quick read is that the judge is saying “I’m not going to let a lot of legal technicalities stand in the way of doing what I will loudly proclaim, for the benefit of newspapers who might want to quote me, is the Right Thing.” But I confess it will take a lot more time for me to thoroughly digest it. Here’s hoping he makes most of his points only once.

34 Responses to “Federal Judge Enjoins Texas Abortion Law; Also: Texas Abortion Law Enjoined by Federal Judge”

  1. Again, the most terrible thing about the new law is the mob-sourcing of enforcement. That is attacks the abortion “right”, instead of some other right, is mere politics.

    It could just as easily be aimed at gun owners, allowing anyone to sue someone for possessing a firearm in public. Or maybe aimed at the well-off for conspicuous consumption, making the plaintiff sad about their life (and, actually, this would be more harm than the TX law requires).

    Considering that the state’s courts are the actual engine of enforcement, an injunction against them hearing any such case might work. I’m not sure what the this judge’s injunction stops though.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  2. When the leftist advocacy demon possesses the degraded human shell for long enough, it gradually starts dropping all sorts of ancillary human social functions that it deems an unnecessary waste of energy.

    Functions like ‘keeping to commonly held standards of proofreading, revision, and clarity’ or ‘reading the thing before it’s released’ or ‘convincingly pretending that the patsies issuing Hell’s rulings are normal people informed by the same experiences and traditions as you and me and not delivery systems for committee-produced talking points.’

    Much like the Thing, the left-demon would much rather terrify and confuse people instead of convincing them, naturally preferring the form of a shifting multi-headed abomination with all of its legal weapons waving everywhere at once to a staid, boring judge with historically problematic associations and personal experience that other humans might be able to relate to.

    Pit's Bulldog (421a39)

  3. What an unfortunate and stupid mistake for the judge to make.

    Time123 (9f42ee)

  4. Looks like he should have paid more attention to his copying/pasting.

    Hoi Polloi (2f1acd)

  5. Looks like he should have paid more attention to his copying/pasting

    Hoi Polloi (2f1acd)

  6. Person.

    nk (1d9030)

  7. The fundamental argument seems to be that the federal government, as a sovereign, has a fundamental power to raise an action *in equity* when a state does something like this. The shift from law to equity is an interesting one.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  8. Well played Hoi Polloi.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  9. It could just as easily be aimed at gun owners,

    Employers who process federal tax withholding and tax preparers who prepare federal returns. This is dipping the toes in rebellion against the Supremacy Clause and it needs to be nipped in the bud. Biden should send in federal Union troops and put Texas back into Reconstruction.

    nk (1d9030)

  10. I assume that a federal judge has a clerk who is tasked with editing and proofreading the opinion…..kind of a big part of that job. Between the two, someone didn’t perform the due diligence of having a 3rd person perform a sanity scan to catch an obviously botched copy/paste. But it’s compounded by still missing it in the first corrected version. Dooooh. It gives the unfortunate appearance of sloppiness…which can then be pinned to the legal reasoning…right or wrong. Still, the law being enjoined was somewhat inevitable. Should SB8 be “saved” because of its convoluted enforcement process which deliberately tries to evade judicial scrutiny? It’s not exactly a legislative strategy that screams “good faith”. I understand that this is the mother-of-all culture war battles….and the majority in Texas wants to shut down as many abortions as possible…pushing some women to go across the state border….or others to seek do-it-yourself abortion pills. But I’m skeptical anyone really wants this approach used for other hot button issues imposed by a local majority….

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  11. Biden should send in federal Union troops and put Texas back into Reconstruction.

    Wouldn’t it be simpler to just have all federal facilities in TX play old Beto O’Rourke speeches on a loop?
    Maybe play that video of Beto at the Dentist for the people waiting in line at the VA.

    steveg (e81d76)

  12. Kevin M (ab1c11) — 10/7/2021 @ 9:24 am

    I’m not sure what the this judge’s injunction stops though.

    Nothing. The ghost of the law continues to operate. That’s the technical beauty of this law. Abortions are stopped not by lawsuits, but by the abortion providers’ own lawyers!

    Or by their insurance companies.

    Only a final decision by the United Sates Supreme Court to invalidate the law can render the threat of being held liable at $10,000 per abortion plus legal costs a nullity.

    Considering that the state’s courts are the actual engine of enforcement, an injunction against them hearing any such case might work.

    That would bulletproof the law. If no lawsuits can be heard, the Supreme Court can;t hear an appeal and invalidate it. Well, the injunction can be appealed. But it doesn’t have to be. At least not fast.

    It would take years for the lawyers to lose their fear that the law might eventually be upheld and cost their clients money.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  13. Biden should send in Union troops and put Texas back into Reconstruction.

    The Grand Army of the Potomac, with tanks.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  14. It would take years for the lawyers to lose their fear that the law might eventually be upheld and cost their clients money.

    There are still adultery laws on the books. Motels could be held liable if they are upheld. BUt after a certain point people stop worrying about it.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  15. I would very much like to see the Supremes strike down this gobbledygook law due to it’s crazy-ass enforcement regime, and oh btw strike down a few environmental laws with similarly lax plaintiff standing rules.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  16. “Again, the most terrible thing about the new law is the mob-sourcing of enforcement. That is attacks the abortion “right”, instead of some other right, is mere politics.”

    It’s a (terribly imperfect) attempt to solve the Kermit Gosnell problem.

    Dr. Gosnell, some may remember, was constantly in violation of Pennsylvania’s “24 weeks” (Roe-compliant) laws, as well an in violation of health regulations, standard medical procedure, and many other things. He was a serial butcher of women and babies and gives the “women’s health industry” a bad name.

    But, the standard law enforcement and health inspection processes were so timid of political blow back , this butcher continued to kill women for YEARS.

    If the badge-carrying members of the community won’t enforce the laws; who should?

    Would anybody who opposes the current Texas law be inclined to support it, if the “weeks”number were raised to something like 30? That citizens can file suit against Gosnell-like clinics for butchering babies and doing surgery (in non-surgical facilities) on mothers, in the month before normal delivery? Would that make any difference?

    pouncer (6c33cf)

  17. Kevin, As usual you’re making tremendous sense.

    Time123 (9f42ee)

  18. The law was given a post natal abortion. Hey fundos read exodus 21:22-25 if you think the bible says a fetus is a baby.

    asset (848b0c)

  19. @16: Well, a similar blunderbuss aimed at school shooters would have anyone owning a gun subject to countless random suits, from anyone who wanted a chance at $10,000, with no opportunity to win in court. At best you would only have to pay your lawyer.

    Under the TX law, I think it would be legal to create a website that autofiled suits against anyone, alleging that they have participated in an abortion. Damages, knowledge of the defendant, facts of the case (they might never have had anything to do with an abortion) seem unimportant to the law.

    For fun, people might start gang-suing every Republican legislator, alleging they had paid for an abortion. Even if the suit is wholly without merit and devoid of facts, I don’t see how one gets dinged for it.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  20. @15

    I would very much like to see the Supremes strike down this gobbledygook law due to it’s crazy-ass enforcement regime, and oh btw strike down a few environmental laws with similarly lax plaintiff standing rules.

    Kevin M (ab1c11) — 10/7/2021 @ 12:24 pm

    …and probably more importantly, those “consent decrees” bs.

    whembly (1fe49d)

  21. Kevin M (ab1c11) — 10/7/2021 @ 12:24 pm

    oh btw strike down a few environmental laws with similarly lax plaintiff standing rules

    With an environmental law any person living in the area can claim to be affected, and so all any environmental organization needs to sue is one member somewhere within a few miles maybe, but for this they don’t need any connection at all. Texas compares it to whistleblower lawsuits, I think.

    But the whole thing here is really legal ju jitsu – it does not depend on any actual enforcement.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jujutsu

    “Jujutsu” thus has the meaning of “yielding-art”, as its core philosophy is to manipulate the opponent’s force against him- or herself rather than confronting it with one’s own force…. using an attacker’s energy against him, rather than directly opposing it.[4]

    So Planned Parenthood’s own lawyers are used against it or maybe the insurance companies lawyers.

    It could take awhile till it becomes a general consensus that no lawsuit will succeed – and even then they have legal costs. Coukd loser ay rules be imposed even though the law specifically says nly winning plaintiffs get reimbursed legal expenses?

    Biden;s vaccine mandate for federal contractors has a little bit of that. If there is any question as to whether it applies to a particular place of business, its lawyers will insist they mandate everyone working for them get vaccinated against Covid without the option of testing.

    They could lose both ways – whatever they do

    https://federalnewsnetwork.com/contracting/2021/10/contractors-still-scratching-their-heads-on-bidens-vaccine-mandate

    This gives me the idea that the creation of contradictory requirements could also get organizations to stop doing things,

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  22. Whembly, I don’t know much about those. Want to elaborate or have a link? If not I’ll google it.

    Time123 (9f42ee)

  23. @20, Seems like an area ripe for abuse in many ways.

    Time123 (9f42ee)

  24. 19, Kevin M (ab1c11) — 10/7/2021 @ 1:36 pm

    Even if the suit is wholly without merit and devoid of facts, I don’t see how one gets dinged for it.

    Well, there are snactions against lawyers for filing frivolous lawsuits. And SLAPP lawsuits, although I don;t know if they exist in Texas.

    https://texaslawhelp.org/article/anti-slapp-suits-frequently-asked-questions

    The anti-SLAPP laws, or in this case, the Texas Citizens Participation Act, covers mostly retaliation for speech or association including retaliation for calling the police. It might not apply to all situations where this law could be used to sue someone without any possible merit, but certainly would to anyone who had opposed abortion.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  25. Much like the Thing, the left-demon would much rather terrify and confuse people instead of convincing them, naturally preferring the form of a shifting multi-headed abomination with all of its legal weapons waving everywhere at once

    You mean like Trump did after he lost the election?

    norcal (b9a35f)

  26. Well, there are sactions against lawyers for filing frivolous lawsuits.

    I don’t see where a lawyer is required.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  27. With an environmental law any person living in the area can claim to be affected

    They can sue about EIRs for things that haven’t happened yet. They simply need to assert a prospective harm. Such as: “if you build that marina, a species could be harmed and that would make me sad.”

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  28. …and probably more importantly, those “consent decrees” bs.

    My favorite kind is where a shill’s suit ends up with a government agency agreeing to a consent decree that obligates them to do something they would otherwise have no power to do.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  29. If the supreme court upholds this texas abortion law the same wording could be used to sue gun stores and gun owners in democrat controlled states.

    asset (149c8f)

  30. OT
    2021 Nobel peace prize given to Journalists risking their lives. Real adversity reveals real courage.

    felipe (484255)

  31. “I would very much like to see the Supremes strike down this gobbledygook law due to it’s crazy-ass enforcement regime, and oh btw strike down a few environmental laws with similarly lax plaintiff standing rules.”

    As it turns out, the only way to get something like that happening is to do it on an issue the Democrats care about! So the Texas law is not only established precedent, but an important step toward establishing impartial jurisprudence!

    “the same wording could be used to sue gun stores and gun owners in democrat controlled states.”

    yes, when you have 95% of the lawyers in your party, such things do and have happened. But guns are already too expensive, as is legal compliance, and the sooner this antiquated notion is halted the sooner we can sort out what laws are actually worth keeping.

    “You mean like Trump did after he lost the election?”

    The Kraken is a singular legendary beast that does not depend on subterfuge or “synergy” at any part of its lifetime. And that fact that you collectively and continually harp on yelling NO EVIDENCE THAT right before hard evidence of your own election tampering comes out means that you still fear it even though it was never officially released on the courts. Burn any tiny part of the Thing and the entire body starts to shriek in unison, it seems.

    “Hey fundos read exodus 21:22-25 if you think the bible says a fetus is a baby.”

    It says it is and offers criminal penalties for its harm. In accordance with what the husband demands, no less. Current jurisprudence is quite far behind, even giving legal authority over innocent lives to women dumb enough to interfere in a fight between men while pregnant. It seems that your fundamental inhumanity also makes you unable to make intellectual and emotional connections to past humans experiencing the same issues. Sad!

    Cold Phlebotomist (074266)

  32. @22 https://www.nytimes.com/2021/04/16/us/politics/justice-department-consent-decrees.html

    Essentially, its been used as a bullying tactic as local jurisdictions don’t have the means to litigate against the executive agencies (ie, DOJ/FBI/DOE/etc…), so to avoid all that “agree” to a settlement proposed by the agencies, which is often partisan BS.

    It’s how the concept of “disparate impact” is incorporated into many of these consent decrees.

    whembly (3b5b58)

  33. Whembly, thank you for taking the time to provide that. It’s an interesting topic I didn’t know much about.

    Time123 (fbdbc6)

  34. This year’s Nobel’s have a decided wokeness to them. Physics: climate science; Chemistry: the greening of chemistry; literature: writing about colonialism and refugees.

    The Medicine Prize wasn’t woke, it was just a punt: many expected the creators of mRNA vaccines to get the nod, but they gave it to a placeholder.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

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