A panel of three unanimous judges from the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, in Richmond, Va., Refused to stay Justice Chuang’s injunction while an appeal progressed. The Trump administration, which often seeks urgent intervention from the Supreme Court when it loses in lower courts, asked judges in August to suspend the injunction.
In October, when it first encountered the case, the Supreme Court issued an unusual order remitting the case to Judge Chuang, saying “a more complete case would facilitate this court’s review” and ordering him to stop. pronounce within 40 days. In the meantime, the contested requirement remained suspended.
Judge Chuang issued a second opinion on December 9, again blocking the requirement. The “health risk has only gotten worse,” he writes.
The Trump administration has returned to the Supreme Court. Her thesis focused primarily on data from Indiana and Nebraska, where state laws continued to require women to take the pills in person.
In those states, the administration told judges, the number of abortions had increased from the previous year. This shows, according to the administration’s brief, that the requirement does not amount to an unconstitutional charge for the right to abortion.
This argument, lawyers for the medical group wrote in response, “defies rudimentary principles of statistical analysis.” Many factors could explain the increase in the number of abortions in both states during the pandemic, they wrote, including disruptions in access to contraceptives, unemployment and other circumstances “which have made pregnancies unsafe. desired more likely and parenthood less tenable for some ”.
Judge Sotomayor was also not impressed by the argument. “Reading statistically insignificant, hand-picked government data,” she writes, “is no more informative than reading tea leaves.