As a massacre unfolds in the state (more than 53,000 Texans were killed through abortions in 2020), the new life-saving Heartbeat Act has survived recent legal challenges and remains in effect to protect children in Texas.
On Tuesday, the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled to “dismiss all challenges” to the private enforcement mechanism of the new law.
For context: The “controversial” new Heartbeat Act, enacted last year and hailed by state lawmakers as the monumental pro-life win of 2021, simply prohibits an individual in Texas from killing a pre-born child after the baby’s heartbeat is detected; the law still does not protect a baby in the first few weeks of his or her life.
Importantly, the Heartbeat Act is unique in its enforcement; it empowers citizens, not government officials, to sue abortion facilities and anyone assisting in the execution of a heartbeat-detected child.
Since the act was approved by the state Legislature last May, pro-abortion businesses, media, and elected officials—including President Joe Biden and his administration—have raged against the law and sued the state to force them to halt it. However, courts—including the U.S. Supreme Court and the Texas Supreme Court—have so far refused their arguments and allowed the law to continue to this day, in part because of its unique legal design.
Now, the federal court has ordered a lower court to throw out any further attempts against the law’s “private enforcement” section.
“Having received the ruling of the Texas Supreme Court that named official defendants may not enforce the provisions of the Texas Heartbeat Act … this court REMANDS the case with instructions to dismiss all challenges to the private enforcement provisions of the statute and to consider whether plaintiffs have standing to challenge,” the ruling stated.
“This is a huge win for the State of Texas, Mark Lee Dickson, and unborn babies with detectable heartbeats!” tweeted Mark Lee Dickson, a prominent Texas pro-life activist and target of abortionists’ lawsuits.
Abortion activists still have other pending lawsuits against the act, as Texas Scorecard recently reported, though “they’ll have an uphill climb,” according to Austin lawyer Tony McDonald.
The Heartbeat Act has reportedly saved more than 20,000 children’s lives from abortion since taking effect in September.