Following the Supreme Court’s demolition of the reproductive freedom precedent, several employers (including a group of law firms) decided to cover employees ’travel expenses, in case they seek abortion or other prohibited procedures. in jurisdictions where they are no longer legal. But only one – Biglaw firm Sidley Austin – has received a letter from the ironically named Texas Freedom Caucus threatening some policy repercussions.
Now, as Bloomberg Law reported, the White House is weighing in on the threatening letter, with assistant press secretary Alexandra Lamanna saying, “These punitive actions and severe measures from elected Republicans are exactly what the President’s warning. ” He continues:
“The outrageous decision of the Supreme Court,” Lamanna said, “has given Republican officials the green light for a radical agenda — including a national abortion ban passed by Congress — and they are accelerating their agenda. to remove the rights of Americans, who are now attacking the Constitutional Right to travel between states at will. “
Although some media reports put out that the letter from the Texas Freedom Caucus was a warning to all companies in Texas, it was not, in fact addressed to all companies in Texas. Just Sidley. And that’s despite many Biglaw companies with offices in Texas coming out and saying they’ll also pay travel expenses if an employee wants abortion. In fact, according to the Caucus ’own website, the only threatening letter they sent – to any employer at all – was to Sidley.
Inspired by an email from a tipster, this fact made me think why Sidley was the target. The most prestigious law firm in Texas, Vinson & Elkins, has also promised to pay for employees ’travel expenses, but surprisingly, it hasn’t been as threatened as Sidley. Kirkland & Ellis is the law firm that makes the most money and will also cover travel expenses, and … no letter. Isn’t it so, and it’s speculation, that of the prestigious law firms in Texas, only a few have women ahead of them? So was that letter, addressed to Sidley’s Yvette Ostolaza.
Perhaps Dick’s Sporting Goods CEO Lauren Hobart should expect a similar letter soon.
Kathryn Rubino is a Senior Editor at Above the Law, host of The Jabot podcast, and co-host of Thinking Like A Lawyer. AtL tipsters are the best, so please connect with him. Feel free to email him any tips, questions, or comments and follow him on Twitter (@Kathryn1).