Amid criticism for deciding too many cases on its “shadow docket,” the Supreme Court nonetheless agreed to hear two lawsuits on Monday challenging Texas’s ban on abortions after six weeks. The Justices are generous to grant the plaintiffs expedited review, but neither legal challenge belongs in federal court.
Despite what you read in the press, abortion rights aren’t directly at issue in either case. The Court rejected Texas’s request to discuss the law’s merits on abortion. Instead, the Court will consider in Whole Woman’s Health v. Austin Reeve Jackson whether Texas can dodge federal court review by outsourcing enforcement to private parties. The question in U.S. v. Texas is whether the Justice Department can seek an injunction in federal court against the state.