Supreme Court Justice Stephen BreyerStephen BreyerBarrett: Supreme Court 'not comprised of a bunch of partisan hacks' Sunday shows - Manchin says he won't vote for .5 trillion bill Breyer says term limits would 'make life easier for me' MORE called the high court’s decision to not block Texas’s abortion law “very, very, very wrong.”
Breyer made the comment in an interview with NPR after reporter Nina Totenberg asked why, given the decision on the all-but-total abortion ban, the public shouldn't believe the court has been politicized.
“I thought the last decision you mentioned was very, very, very wrong. I’ll add one more very,” Breyer said, referring to the decision on the Texas law. “And I wrote a dissent and that’s the way it works.”
Texas’s law, S.B. 8, bans abortions once a fetal heartbeat can be detected, which is typically after six weeks and is before many people know they are pregnant.
It also allows private citizens to sue people who aid or perform an abortion in violation of the law and provides for $10,000 plus legal fees for successful lawsuits.
The high court voted 5-4 last week to not consider an emergency challenge from abortion providers to block the measure from taking effect, with Chief Justice John Roberts joining the court’s three liberal justices in a dissent.
Critics warned that allowing the law to move forward effectively overturned the landmark Roe v. Wade decision, in which the court decided women had a constitutional right to abortion. It also raised fears that the decision would allow other GOP-controlled legislators to impose similar abortion bans.
The Justice Department announced Thursday that it was suing Texas to block the law, with Attorney General Merrick GarlandMerrick GarlandHouse passes bill to ensure abortion access in response to Texas law Delta pushes for national 'no fly' list of unruly passengers after banning 1,600 from flights Democrats demand more action from feds on unruly airline passengers MORE saying the law was “clearly unconstitutional under longstanding Supreme Court precedent.”
Breyer said the case should not have been decided on procedural grounds. The court could later be asked to rule substantively on that law and is already set to hear a case regarding Mississippi's 15-week abortion ban.
“We thought that that particular case should not be decided just on an emergency basis, Breyer said, repeating that he felt the majority was “very, very wrong.”
“It’s a procedural matter, so we’ll see what happens in that area when we get a substantive matter in front of us,” he continued.