Publicado: Sol, Febrero 10, 2019
Global | Por Milagro Delgado

Roberts Joins Liberals To Block Louisiana Abortion Law

Roberts Joins Liberals To Block Louisiana Abortion Law

De Vogue: This law - called the Louisiana's Unsafe Abortion Protection Act - was passed back in 2014.

Thursday's decision offers a temporary reprieve for abortion rights advocates-especially in Louisiana, where the law would have winnowed the number of abortion providers in the state down to one.

"With tonight's decision, the Supreme Court continues a disappointing trend of avoiding their responsibility on decisions concerning abortion", she said. In the 5-4 ruling, Chief Justice John Roberts joined with his liberal colleagues on the court.

Donald Trump's most recent appointee to the bench, Justice Brett Kavanaugh, voted to allow the law to go into effect and see whether doctors could obtain admitting privileges within 45 days.

Writing for the majority, Judge Jerry E. Smith conceded that the state had not provided any instance in which a patient sustained "a worse result" because a doctor lacked hospital admitting privileges.

An abortion business, Hope Medical Group, had gone to court to challenge the law's requirement that abortionists have "admitting privileges" at a hospital within 30 miles of their abortion business.

Supreme Court is stopping Louisiana from enforcing new regulations on abortion clinics in a test of the conservative court’s views
Roberts Joins Liberals To Block Louisiana Abortion Law

A spokeswoman for Collins says many critics of Kavanaugh's dissenting opinion "haven't even read it". Seated from left: Stephen Breyer, Clarence Thomas, John Roberts, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Samuel Alito.

In that decision, Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt, a five-member majority said the law "provides few, if any, health benefits for women, poses a substantial obstacle to women seeking abortions, and constitutes an "undue burden" on their constitutional right to do so". Thus, the four justices who dissented in the Louisiana case were saying not just that the previous decision should be overturned, but that the precedent itself is utterly meaningless and can be ignored even before they overturn it, if the law in question has the salutary effect of making it impossible for women to exercise their reproductive rights (that's not how they put it, of course, but that's the essence of their position).

This stay lasts only until the Court votes on whether to take this case and does not necessarily signal which way the Court will vote on what could be an early abortion case of the new Supreme Court. When Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy retired a year ago, Trump nominated Kavanaugh, who barely received Senate confirmation after a contentious battle focused on his abortion views and sexual assault allegations.

Planned Parenthood noted Friday that the outcome of the Louisiana case means "access to abortion in the state remains protected for now", but expressed concern that "Kavanaugh's dissent reminds us the threat to Roe v. Wade remains very real". "The court should not prevent state legislators from doing the job they were elected by their constituents to do". The Court granted that request Thursday night. If they're going to eventually uphold the Louisiana law anyway, it's much better not to be so obvious that they're just out to destroy abortion rights wherever they can.

Some of those measures, which provide for late-term abortion in the cases where the health of the mother is in jeopardy, have generated fierce opposition from anti-abortion groups. "If a law does not amount to an unconstitutional burden unless it does something as dramatic as close 20 clinics in a geographic area as large as Texas, nearly every law would be constitutional".

Common, in-clinic procedures performed by other specialists have far greater risks than abortions. That would be a tacit acknowledgment that a majority of the justices no longer support the 2016 decision, and an invitation to anti-abortion state legislatures to pass more laws aimed at gutting Roe v. Wade without reversing it outright. "The Texas law would have shuttered some 20 clinics, whereas Louisiana's law would shutter only one or two of the state's three clinics". That will come later, when the Court decides if it will take the case.

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