The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments Monday in two cases revolving around a Texas law that bans most abortions after six weeks of pregnancy.
One case was brought by the Justice Department, and the other was by abortion providers in Texas.
The law permits private citizens, instead of state officials, to enforce the law through suits filed in state court. Critics contend that would insulate the cases from federal review.
During the almost three hours of arguments, liberal and conservative justices expressed concern for the impact on constitutional rights under that kind of enforcement.
Justice Amy Coney Barret asked whether “the constitutional defense can be fully aired” if a suit is filed in state court.
Justice Elena Kagan said the law prevents “every woman in Texas from exercising a constitutional right as declared by the court.” She was referring to Roe v. Wade.
One month from now, the Supreme Court is scheduled to hear a case over a Mississippi law banning abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy.