On Monday, in a 5-4 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned an important Louisiana law requiring abortion providers to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital. Chief Justice John Roberts joined the Court’s four liberal Justices in the decision despite the fact that he ruled opposite in a near-identical case just four years ago.
The Court’s decision in June Medical Services v. Russo represents a significant blow to states’ rights and women’s safety. The Louisiana law in question was enacted to protect women from the abortion industry and its barbaric history of botched abortions by requiring abortion providers – like doctors at all free-standing clinics – to be able to admit and treat patients at nearby hospitals if emergencies arise. This common-sense bill was sponsored by Democratic State Representative Katrina Jackson; it received overwhelming bipartisan support for the Louisiana House and Senate; and it was signed into law by Republican Governor Bobby Jindal.
Though Chief Justice Roberts recently warned the Court against “second-guessing” the actions of “politically accountable officials of the States” (see South Bay United Pentecostal Church v. Newsom), he took the unfortunate step of not only “second-guessing” but overturning the actions of Louisiana’s duly elected Legislature and Executive. And just as troubling, he joined the Court’s liberal wing in prioritizing the abortion industry’s business interests over women’s health and safety.
Why should an abortion provider be held to lesser medical standards than other physicians?
Why should an abortion clinic be held to lesser facility standards than other clinics?
Why should abortion be the exception to quality standards of medical care?
Why should women be subjected to dangerous, medically substandard care?
All states have a compelling interest to regulate abortion providers and clinics in order to protect woman. We all know that the abortion industry consistently places profits over patients, and this week, the U.S. Supreme Court rejected an opportunity to terminate this conflict of interest – one which lines abortion providers’ pockets while forcing women to shoulder all risks of an abortion, even if abortion providers violate basic standards of care.
In his dissent, Justice Samuel Alito opined: “Today’s decision claims new victims. The divided majority cannot agree on what the abortion right requires, but it nevertheless strikes down a Louisiana law, Act 620, that the legislature enacted for the asserted purpose of protecting women’s health.”
We agree with Justice Alito. This week, the Court did not simply create winners and losers – it claimed new victims. Women deserve better, not lesser standards of care. Women deserve fewer risks, not more. And lest we forget the other victims of abortion – children deserve life, not death.
Thus, we continue the fight. Are you with us?
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With every setback comes an opportunity, and with your support and participation, we are well on our way to fostering a state and nation where life is cherished!
President & Executive Director