Supreme Court Strikes Down Anti-Abortion Law

The U.S. Supreme Court just ruled,
in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt,
that Texas’ HB 2 admitting privileges & surgical center requirements are
unconstitutional!

This is a huge win for women everywhere!

Although this case only addresses this Texas law, the effect of this decision should have a much broader impact.

Approximately 24 other states have passed similar restrictions into law. Although the majority of these laws have been challenged, they have not made it to the U. S. Supreme Court.

Now there is a strong case to strike down similar laws in these other states.

The Details in the Ruling

It was a 5-3 decision with Justice Stephen Breyer writing the majority opinion on behalf of Justices Elena Kagan, Sonia Sotomayor, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Anthony Kennedy and himself.

> The ruling throws out an earlier Appellate Court decision which – had it been upheld – would have resulted in the closing of the vast majority of abortion clinics in Texas, leaving only 9 of the more than 40 that were functioning before the law was passed.

> This case centered on the question, had Texas lawmakers placed an “undue burden” on the constitutional right to an abortion with the new restrictions? The language “undue burden” was established in the 1992 landmark case Planned Parenthood v. Casey.

> In the Majority Opinion, the justices explained that the two parts of the Texas law being challenged create a “substantial obstacle in the path of women” who are seeking abortions and neither provision “offers medical benefits sufficient to justify the burdens upon access that each imposes.” In other words, YES, Texas’ HB 2 did place an “undue burden” on women!

(Texas’ HB 2 had required doctors who performed abortions to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles. The law also had required abortion clinics to meet the stricter standards of hospital-style “ambulatory surgical centers.”)

> Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt is the first major Supreme Court decision on abortion since the 1992 Planned Parenthood v. Casey.

Let’s Be Perfectly Clear

> Texas’ HB 2 was never about protecting women’s health.
It was always about ending access to abortion!

> Texas’ HB 2 is only one of the many anti-choice laws extremists have already passed in states across our nation. These laws are about obliterating abortion rights and access to birth control – nothing less.

> The Republican National Platform includes a plank dedicated to opposing abortion.

(From the 2012 Platform: “Faithful to the “self-evident” truths enshrined in the Declaration of Independence, we assert the sanctity of human life and affirm that the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed. We support a human life amendment to the Constitution and endorse legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections apply to unborn children.” )

We Have Only One Choice!

> We must continue to fight on every front:
from County governments to State Governments to the Federal Government.

> Every Election Matters!

> We must now go on the offensive and fight for a Country where women’s comprehensive rights are valued and guaranteed!

AN IMPORTANT READ: An Overview of Abortion Laws

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