A lawsuit that could test the constitutionality of the nation’s most restrictive abortion ban was filed in Texas on Monday against a doctor who admitted to performing an abortion considered illegal under the new law.
The details of the civil suit against Alan Braid, a physician in San Antonio, are as unusual as the law itself, which empowers private citizens to enforce the ban on abortion oncecardiac activity has been detected — often as early as six weeks into a pregnancy.
The plaintiff is a felon serving a federal sentence at home in Arkansas, with no connection to the abortion at issue. He said he filed the claim not because of strongly held views about reproductive rights but in part because of the $10,000 he could receive if the lawsuit is successful. A second suit filed Monday —just four paragraphs long — came from a man in Chicago who asked a state court to strike down the abortion law as invalid.
Since the Texas ban took effect Sept. 1, advocates on both sides of the abortion debate have been anticipating such lawsuits, though perhaps not from a “disbarred and disgraced former Arkansas lawyer,” as Oscar Stilley described himself in his complaint.
Really, you can’t make this stuff up.