Sen. Bill Cassidy on Sunday said he expects the U.S. Supreme Court may well “swat away” the Texas abortion law once it comes to them in an appropriate case.
The U.S. Supreme Court, in a 5-4 vote, allowed Texas‘ new abortion law to take effect last week. But in doing so, the court’s majority did not specifically pass judgment on the merits of the law — which sets up unique and possibly unconstitutional enforcement mechanisms dependent on private citizens using the courts.
“I think the Supreme Court will swat it away once it comes to them in an appropriate manner,” Cassidy (R-La.) said on ABC’s “This Week.”
“If it’s as terrible as people say it is, it‘ll be destroyed by the Supreme Court,” Cassidy said. He added that the Supreme Court had rejected the challenge last week because those who brought the lawsuit didn’t have “standing” to do so, meaning they didn’t have a sufficient stake in the case to file a challenge to the law.
Supporters of legal abortion, among other things, argued that the court’s acceptance of the new law represented a de facto end to rights guaranteed in the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, as well as an attack on personal privacy and a way of introducing an element of vigilante justice to the legal system. “It just seems, I know this sounds ridiculous, almost un-American,” President Joe Biden said Friday.
Cassidy, who noted his personal opposition to abortion, said Democrats overreacted to last week’s ruling. The Louisiana senator also said all the arguments over the Texas law were a distraction from more pressing issues, including the devastating impact of Hurricane Ida on his home state.
“People are using it to gin up their base to distract from disastrous policies in Afghanistan, maybe for fundraising appeals,“ he said. “I wish we would focus on issues … as opposed to theater. It was about if they had standing, nothing to do with constitutionality. I think we should move on to other issues.”
Speaking on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” former Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) said critics of the new law were not overreacting.
“I’m not so sure that there’s a huge role for Biden and/or Congress right now other than shouting from the rooftops that this law that the Supreme Court blessed — and you can try to dress it up and put up a bow on it — but they blessed a law that embraces vigilantism,” she said.
Another Republican abortion opponent also was skeptical about the new law and its chances for making it through the courts unscathed.
“Certainly in this case, this bill in Texas seems to be a little bit extreme with this problem of bounties for people that turn in somebody that drove someone to an abortion clinic,” Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said on “Meet the Press.”
He added: “Legislatures have rights to pass bills, governors have the right to sign them into law or not, and the court gets to make the ultimate decision.“