Indiana asked the Supreme Court Thursday to move quickly to officially transmit its opinion overturning Roe v. Wade to a federal appeals court so that the state can attempt to put its strict parental notification law into effect.
The Indiana law was enjoined by a district court in 2017 as a violation of Supreme Court precedent. But last month, after the Supreme Court invalidated Roe v. Wade in a case called Dobbs v. Jackson, the justices instructed the US Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit to take another look at the Indiana law pursuant to Dobbs.
Under Supreme Court rules, the justices would set that process in motion by transmitting their mandate by July 25. In an emergency application filed with the court Thursday, however, the state asked the court to speed up the process.
The request comes as more than half the states are expected to bar or severely restrict abortion. Thirteen states have laws in place that are designed to be “triggered” and take effect if Roe no longer applies. In some states those laws have gone into effect, but others such as Texas, Idaho and Tennessee will wait for the Supreme Court mandate to come down. Those states have not yet asked the justices to expedite its judgment.
“Immediate transmittal of this Court’s judgment is necessary to avoid inflicting further irreparable harm to the State of Indiana,” the state’s Solicitor General Thomas M. Fisher argued.
Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky told the Supreme Court Thursday night that it has no objection to Indiana’s request to expedite the Supreme Court’s judgment. The abortion rights lawyers likely recognized that allowing the mandate to be issued a few days in advance would not make a big difference.
The letter means that the Supreme Court will likely expedite its mandate so that the state can return to court and try to have its law put into effect.
The application was filed with Justice Amy Coney Barrett, who has jurisdiction over the 7th Circuit, but it could land before Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson because Barrett was sitting on the 7th Circuit when the case was pending. It is likely that either justice would refer the petition to the full court for review.
Since Dobbs came down, more than a dozen states have barred or severely restricted abortion.
This story has been updated with additional developments Thursday.