Denver Newsroom, Sep 7, 2021 / 14:30 pm
Attorney General Merrick Garland on Monday vowed to “protect” women seeking abortions in Texas, days after a new state law went into effect aiming to prohibit most abortions after six weeks.
While the Justice Department “urgently explores all options to challenge” Texas’ new law and “protect the constitutional rights of women and other persons, including access to an abortion," the agency will enforce a 1994 law prohibiting the obstruction of abortion clinics, Garland said in a Sept. 6 statement.
“We will not tolerate violence against those seeking to obtain or provide reproductive health services, physical obstruction or property damage in violation of the FACE Act,” Garland wrote.
Texas’ new “heartbeat” law does not allow physical intimidation or harm against women seeking abortions. Rather, the law allows for private citizens to sue over abortions performed after the detection of a fetal heartbeat - which can occur as early as six weeks gestation.