Texas Woman Seeks Abortion Approval for Lethal Fetal Diagnosis

Texas Woman Seeks Abortion Approval for Lethal Fetal Diagnosis

In Texas, where abortion is heavily restricted, a pregnant woman whose baby is not expected to survive is going to court to get permission for an urgent abortion. This is the first lawsuit of its kind since the Texas Supreme Court overturned almost completely banned abortions after Roe v. Wade last year.

In Texas, there are two strict rules against abortion. Not only is abortion banned entirely until conception, but the state also has a “bounty” law. This law rewards private individuals who sue others for helping someone get an abortion.

There are exceptions to save the mother’s life, but campaigners are pushing for the state to clarify because the law is unclear about what exactly counts as a risk to the mother’s life.

The Center for Reproductive Rights has gone to court, asking to temporarily lift Texas’s abortion restrictions for Kate Cox, a 31-year-old Dallas resident. Kate is 20 weeks pregnant, and her baby has a genetic problem called complete trisomy 18. This condition can lead to a miscarriage, stillbirth, or the baby’s death shortly after birth.

If Kate can’t get an abortion in Texas, she may have to continue the pregnancy, risking the birth of a baby who might only survive a few minutes. The group stated that “her only other option is to try to leave the state.”

Kate Cox and her husband want more children; they already have two little ones. Doctors recommended an abortion for her health and future fertility. Unfortunately, in Texas, she can’t have one as long as the baby’s heart is still beating.

If Kate’s heart stops, doctors might induce labor. However, the lawsuit states that because Kate had cesarean sections in past pregnancies, inducing labor carries a significant risk of uterine rupture.

The Texas Supreme Court is currently reviewing an emergency request while also dealing with a challenge from supporters of abortion rights and women dealing with unsafe pregnancies. These women are asking the state to clearly define medical exemptions so that doctors can perform abortions without fearing legal consequences or losing their licenses.

Before the Texas Attorney General’s appeal, a district court judge decided that the laws shouldn’t apply when the mother’s health is at risk or the baby won’t survive after birth. This decision is temporarily on hold. In the coming weeks, the state Supreme Court will make a decision.

As per the lawsuit, Kate Cox is hopeful about the court’s decision.

The argument is clear: “Kate Cox needs an abortion, and she needs it now.”

Unlike the Texas Supreme Court decision that supporters want to apply broadly to all abortions, Kate’s lawyers are asking for a specific order allowing her abortion. This order would protect her husband from civil penalties under the state’s bounty law and safeguard her doctor from punishment.

Expressing her frustration, Cox stated, “I’m trying to do what’s best for my baby and myself, but the state of Texas is making us both suffer.”

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