Gov. Edwards releases statement after Supreme Court blocks La. abortion clinic law
- Author: Joey Payne Feb 11, 2019,
Feb 11, 2019, 0:48
In an order issued Thursday (Feb. 7), the high court blocked enforcement of a Louisiana law to require that an abortion doctor have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital. "The 5th Circuit previously examined the facts and concluded Louisiana's law does not constitute a burden and is a reasonable step to protect women". The practical effect would be to reduce the number of abortion providers in Louisiana.
Get the facts, direct to your inbox.. Act 620 was modeled specifically after the provisions in Texas' HB 2 that were eventually declared unconstitutional in 2016. He gutted the Voting Rights Act in Shelby County v. Holder. But unless and until it does, the future of abortion rights is still in legal jeopardy. The Supreme Court could decide this spring whether to add the case to their calendar for the term that begins in October. It's clear that Brett Kavanaugh does not.
First, let's get a few details out of the way. One of the interesting things, I think, is that Chief Justice Roberts may have different concerns motivating him to sort of sit in the middle on abortion.
Some may even be willing to reverse the 1973 Roe vs Wade precedent that established a constitutional right to abortion throughout the US.
But the Supreme Court's conservatives, this time including Roberts, overruled.
The Supreme Court is now likely to take up the clinic's appeal of a lower court ruling allowing the law, with a decision on the merits possible in 2020, just months before the US presidential election. "This should be an easy case - all that's needed is a straightforward application of the Court's own precedent".
The Supreme Court, divided 5-4, has temporarily blocked implementation of a Louisiana abortion law almost identical to the Texas law the high court struck down in 2016.
Thursday's vote was about process.
"When lower courts issue injunctions against Supreme Court precedent, including decisions Roberts himself recently wrote, he has no problem taking a hands-off approach to those lower courts", he continued.
The law was passed in 2014 but courts had prevented it from going into effect. By that measure, Roberts took the conservative path: He voted to maintain the status quo. "Rather, the question should be whether the Louisiana law confers any benefits relative to the cost imposed on abortion". Roberts is no less committed than ever to seeing abortion rights eliminated.
There is rampant speculation that if Louisiana's law is allowed to take effect that could open the door to reversing Roe v. Wade.
The doctors have a 45-day regulatory transition period in which to obtain privileges from hospitals and could bring a complaint at the conclusion of that time if they are unsuccessful, Kavanaugh wrote. Chief Justice William Rehnquist had been a fierce critic of the Supreme Court decision that requires police officers to advise arrestees of their Miranda rights to remain silent and have a lawyer represent them.
Kavanaugh's dissent proves this point.
"While some doctors could promise 10 patients a year in exchange for admitting privileges, an abortion provider would struggle to refer 10 patients in their entire career", Tu said.
Kennedy, a conservative who retired in July 2018, had voted to preserve abortion rights in 1992 and again in the 2016 Texas case.
"With tonight's decision, the Supreme Court continues a disappointing trend of avoiding their responsibility on decisions concerning abortion", she said. But the substance of his dissent doesn't really matter. Kavanaugh is on the Supreme Court because he pinky-swore Susan Collins he'd uphold Roe.
In cases on what has been called the court's "shadow docket", those in the majority typically do not provide detailed reasoning for why they granted or denied the requests.
"The new makeup of the Supreme Court indicated that it was likely it would have gone through, which would have had devastating consequences", she said.