Anti-abortion activists can celebrate even as a case favors their side.

Anti-abortion activists are celebrating the Friday delivery of a case favorable to their side, and they are hailing it as evidence the Supreme Court will allow the controversial Texas abortion restrictions to stand when…

Anti-abortion activists can celebrate even as a case favors their side.

Anti-abortion activists are celebrating the Friday delivery of a case favorable to their side, and they are hailing it as evidence the Supreme Court will allow the controversial Texas abortion restrictions to stand when it is argued in October.

But as the case winds its way through the system, it has raised questions about whether the country’s highest court could possibly be satisfied with the authority Texas is taking as a “sovereign,” not a state, and a state that “has no interest in admitting privileges requirements,” as a district court judge wrote in striking down the 2014 law.

The case, H.B. 2, in Texas, comes to the high court after a court-appointed special master issued an opinion in February that Texas was somehow within its rights to punt the question to the Supreme Court — and that the state itself was providing the best help it could to ensure the cases are heard there.

In determining whether the state was sufficiently engaged in the case in advance, the court said it believed Texas had “exceeded the scope of its delegated authority” and recommended the Supreme Court hear the case.

By essentially telling the court it was on the right track, the special master also explained how the court could pick the case in the first place.

Several major abortion providers and their supporters were quick to praise the special master’s report as a victory for the defendants.

Abortion rights and access groups argued they believed the state’s argument would be the opposite, because if the special master determined it had legal standing — and that was largely predicated on the court determining Texas has some role in the case — Texas would have the best chance of being heard in the case.

And some state lawmakers likewise expressed hope they could argue the state shouldn’t need to appear in the case at all, because it was not in the wrong and because the state is merely preparing to defend the law.

The Center for Reproductive Rights and Whole Woman’s Health filed a motion asking the court to reject Texas’ argument that the state does not need to join the case in any capacity.

“This report provides a convincing answer that the state is already fully engaged in the case,” wrote Nan Aron, the president of the Alliance for Justice, an association of more than 100 national and regional legal organizations representing the liberal wing of the Democratic Party.

“This report provides a convincing answer that the state is already fully engaged in the case,” wrote Nan Aron, the president of the Alliance for Justice, an association of more than 100 national and regional legal organizations representing the liberal wing of the Democratic Party.

But those advocating for abortion rights are also skeptical of the special master’s recommendation.

“The report shows the special master and his staff are quite selective when it comes to taking up cases at all,” said Nancy Northup, president of the Center for Reproductive Rights.

In fact, it seems the special master could be complicit in the anti-abortion case’s success, as they did appear willing to yield so they could put the case on the Supreme Court’s docket. They did not appear to recommend that the court consider whether Texas should be granted standing based on its need for the case to proceed.

“The special master’s opinion effectively answers their objection that Texas is not sufficiently assertive in the case,” said Shannon Minter, legal director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights.

And, Minter suggested, it also counters the arguments for keeping the case in the state where it occurred.

“The special master’s recommendation that Texas be granted status by the Supreme Court to help overcome the challenges the state has had to face in defending the rules in the suit not to come as much of a surprise,” he said.

Supporters of Texas said the state was always open to the court getting involved in the case, even if it meant it would be the most directly involved of all of the states.

“States have standing to defend any laws they want,” said Cecile Richards, president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America. “It’s time for the Supreme Court to see right through Texas’s multilayered, lawyer-crafted charade and then decide if it should hear the case at all.”

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