The Biden administration urged a federal judge to block the Texas heartbeat law Friday after its previous attempts to stop the abortion ban have failed.

The hearing before U.S. District Judge Robert Pitman centered around the unique private enforcement mechanism in the law, according to CNN.

Typically, state governments enforce pro-life laws and, when the laws are challenged, judges can block the states from enforcing them in a preliminary injunction. However, the Texas law leaves enforcement up to individual people. So, judges are considering whether they can stop all private citizens from enforcing the law – especially without allowing private citizens the chance to defend themselves in court first.

Attorneys for Texas said Biden’s Department of Justice is being unfair by asking the court to block “absent third parties” from enforcing the law “without letting them be heard.”

The Texas law went into effect Sept. 1, prohibiting abortions once an unborn baby’s heartbeat is detectable, about six weeks of pregnancy. Thus far, the courts have refused to temporarily block the law, and as many as 3,000 unborn babies already have been spared from abortion.

On Friday, attorneys for the Department of Justice argued that the law is unconstitutional and the federal government has an interest in seeing it blocked.

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“Texas has made clear it does not want to follow the Supreme Court‘s abortion precedents,” federal government attorney Brian Netter said, according to the Washington Times.

He asked the judge to issue an injunction blocking Texas and “all of its officers, employees and agents, including private parties” from suing abortionists who violate the law, CNN reports.

“The state resorted to an unprecedented scheme of vigilante justice that was designed to scare abortion providers and others who might help women exercise their constitutional rights, while skirting judicial review,” Netter said.

However, Will Thompson, an attorney representing Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s Office, told the judge that the federal government is using “inflammatory rhetoric” to attack the law, and the heartbeat law is not the only legislation that allows private enforcement.

“This is not some kind of vigilante scheme. It’s a scheme that uses the normal and lawful process,” Thompson said.

Netter contended that private citizens really are just acting for the state as a proxy to enforce the law. The judge asked Thompson about this claim.

Here’s more from the Washington Times:

Thompson said he disagreed with that characterization.

“We don’t think that the private plaintiffs are put in the shoes of the state,” he said, adding that the law is “not as unusual” as the Biden administration Justice Department claims it to be, noting other areas of law that allow private citizens to bring lawsuits.

Afterward, Texas Right to Life slammed the Biden administration’s arguments as “maniacal” and “entirely unprecedented.”

Kimberlyn Schwartz, director of media and communications, summarized the hearing: “Ultimately, the Justice Department is asking the court to toss out all logic and judicial precedent in order to cater to the abortion industry. The Biden administration’s case is desperate and far-fetched, and we expect an impartial court to declare the lawsuit without merit.”

Judge Pitman is an appointee of pro-abortion President Barack Obama. In September, he did not grant the Biden administration’s request to immediately block enforcement of the law. As a result, the law remains in effect, and pro-life advocates say hundreds of babies have been spared from abortion since then.

It is not clear when Pitman will issue his ruling, but CNN previously pointed out that even if he does issue a preliminary injunction, some abortion facilities may not start aborting unborn babies again right away.

According to the report: “… under the law, a clinic could still be liable if it performed an abortion prohibited by the law while the court’s order was in effect, if that same order was later reversed by a higher court.”

The Biden administration has taken multiple actions to thwart Texas’s efforts to save unborn babies from abortion. Along with the lawsuit, it also set aside $10 million – taxpayers’ money – to provide grants to the abortion industry in Texas and make additional Title X family planning funds available.

In 2020, about 54,000 unborn babies were aborted in Texas, and about 85 percent happened after six weeks of pregnancy, according to state health statistics.

While abortion activists say some women are traveling to other states for abortions, they admit that others are having their babies instead.

Meanwhile, pro-life advocates are reaching out to pregnant women across Texas with compassion and understanding, offering resources and emotional support to help them and their babies. Earlier this year, state lawmakers increased support for pregnant and parenting mothers and babiesensuring that they have resources to choose life for their babies.

About a dozen states have passed heartbeat laws to protect unborn babies from abortion, but Texas is the first to be allowed to enforce its law. Whether the law will remain in effect or ultimately be upheld as constitutional in court remains uncertain, but pro-life leaders are hopeful now that the U.S. Supreme Court has a conservative majority.

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