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Texas Sues Biden Administration Over Hospital Abortion Guidance

AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez, File

On Thursday, Texas asked a federal court to block the Biden administration’s guidance issued this week that requires hospitals to perform abortions in medical emergencies regardless of state abortion laws. 


To recap, Townhall covered this week how the HHS issued the guidance after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last month. A report from The Wall Street Journal noted that the HHS wrote that performing an abortion if the doctor deems it necessary in a medical emergency is mandated even if the procedure is not legal under state law.

“Under the law, no matter where you live, women have the right to emergency care — including abortion care,” Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra said in the guidance to health care providers. “Today, in no uncertain terms, we are reinforcing that we expect providers to continue offering these services, and that federal law preempts state abortion bans when needed for emergency care."

In a press release from Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s (R) office, it explained that the Department of Health and Human Services is using the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA) to require hospitals to perform abortions. 

“By this move, the Biden Administration seeks to transform every emergency room in the country into a walk-in abortion clinic. EMTALA does not authorize and has never been thought to authorize the federal government to require emergency healthcare providers to perform abortions,” the press release reads.


The lawsuit also says that it is an attempt to turn emergency rooms into abortion clinics.

"The Biden Administration’s response to Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Org., 142 S. Ct. 2228 (2022), which ended the terrible regime of Roe v. Wade, is to attempt to use federal law to transform every emergency room in the country into a walk-in abortion clinic," the lawsuit reads. "President Biden is flagrantly disregarding the legislative and democratic process—and flouting the Supreme Court’s ruling before the ink is dry—by having his appointed bureaucrats mandate that hospitals and emergency medicine physicians must perform abortions."

In a published statement, Paxton reiterated that this move is part of the Biden administration’s effort to push its pro-abortion agenda in the aftermath of the Supreme Court’s historic ruling.

“This administration has a hard time following the law, and now they are trying to have their appointed bureaucrats mandate that hospitals and emergency medicine physicians perform abortions,” Attorney General Paxton said. “I will ensure that President Biden will be forced to comply with the Supreme Court’s important decision concerning abortion and I will not allow him to undermine and distort existing laws to fit his administration’s unlawful agenda.” 


Earlier this month, the Texas Supreme Court allowed the state’s abortion trigger law to take effect. The law, established in 1925, prohibits abortion in the state.

On Twitter, Paxton called the ruling a “pro-life victory.”

“Our state’s pre-Roe statutes banning abortion in Texas are 100% good law. Litigation continues, but I’ll keep winning for Texas’s unborn babies,” he wrote.

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