Both suits were filed in state court in San Antonio and both men are representing themselves.
“Neither of these lawsuits are valid attempts to save innocent human lives,” said John Seago, legislative director for Texas Right to Life, the state’s largest anti-abortion group, which lobbied for the new abortion law. “Both cases are self-serving legal stunts, abusing the cause of action created in the Texas Heartbeat Act for their own purposes.”
He added that he and others at Texas Right to Life “believe Braid published his Op-Ed intending to attract imprudent lawsuits.”
The Center for Reproductive Rights, an abortion rights group that represents Dr. Braid, said he had not been formally served and declined to make him available for an interview. In a statement, the group’s senior counsel, Marc Hearron, said the Texas law “says that ‘any person’ can sue over a violation, and we are starting to see that happen, including by out-of-state claimants.”
In his opinion essay for The Post, Dr. Braid said he had decided to violate the Texas law, which makes no exceptions for rape or incest, out of a firm belief in abortion rights. “I have daughters, granddaughters and nieces. I believe abortion is an essential part of health care,” he wrote. “I have spent the past 50 years treating and helping patients. I can’t just sit back and watch us return to 1972.”
Understand the Texas Abortion Law
Mr. Braid wrote that on the morning of Sept. 6, he had “provided an abortion to a woman who, though still in her first trimester, was beyond the state’s new limit.”
After reading that, Mr. Stilley said he decided to file suit. His complaint includes a description of his own legal troubles, which he said included a federal conviction for tax evasion and conspiracy; he was released to home confinement after a decade in prison.
Mr. Stilley said in the interview that he believed in a woman’s right not to have an unwanted child, and that because his lawsuit was a win-win for him, he rushed to file it.
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