States dealing with the coronavirus pandemic have to fight the spread of the virus in every way they can: Closures, shelter-in-place orders, emergency funding for healthcare, calls for volunteer help, including retired doctors and nurses, and dozens of other methods.
Texas, like Ohio and Louisiana, banned all elective surgeries and procedures in an attempt to save hospital beds, but also to save on dwindling supplies of “personal protective equipment” (PPE) such as masks, hospital gowns, gloves and protective eyewear that are essential for meeting the overwhelming needs of healthcare facilities and personnel on the frontlines of the current battle against the deadly virus.
Abortion clinics in Ohio have defied the state’s ban by saying they will continue to perform abortions, while somehow conserving PPE, a transparently false statement. Louisiana’s three abortion clinics closed, although no one expects them give in without a legal fight. These are the same clinics who defied the state’s law about hospital admitting privileges requirements for abortionists and sued. That case is now at the U.S. Supreme Court.
Texas has some major abortion players, including several large Planned Parenthood clinics, and they’ve joined together to file a federal lawsuit over the prohibition. They allege that Governor Greg Abbott’s Executive Order (EO), which banned elective surgeries and procedures, violates their constitutional rights. And they particularly object to Texas’ Attorney General Ken Paxton’s follow-up press release affirming that the Governor’s EO covers “any type of abortions.”
This latter objection is important because the Texas abortion industry sells a substantial amount of chemical abortions, which involve taking some pills rather than requiring a procedure. Hence, no PPE is involved in those. The abortionists argue that Paxton’s order covers chemical abortions (legal in Texas up to 10 weeks gestation), whereas Gov. Abbott’s EO does not.
The Texas abortion industry is flushed with its own recent success at knocking out a Texas admitting privilege requirement for abortionists at local hospitals. In 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled against the Texas law in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt. The lead plaintiff, Whole Woman’s Health, is one of the plaintiffs in the current challenge to Texas’ attempt to deal with the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.
The abortion industry is well-financed and not afraid to show its legal muscle, as evidenced by the 12, I repeat, 12 attorneys who signed the official court papers filed on behalf of the abortion sellers in this Texas case.
In addition to being the industry that kills babies for a profit, it also, if this lawsuit is to be believed, apparently thinks of itself as providing such a valuable public service that it should preempt the needs of the fight against a worldwide pandemic.
It’s a strange and sad day when churches are closed, but abortion clinics remain open.
I’m praying for Texas in this court fight. Won’t you join me?