SUPREME COURT DECISION IN WHOLE WOMAN’S HEALTH v. HELLERSTEDT
By a vote of 5-3, the U.S. Supreme Court today struck provisions of a Texas law requiring abortion clinics to meet the same standards as ambulatory surgical centers and requiring abortionists to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital in case of medical emergencies (with certain exceptions.) The Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals previously rejected facial attacks on both provisions.
“This case has highlighted the false claims of abortion advocates that abortion is just another medical procedure,” said Wanda Franz, President of West Virginians for Life. “These abortion clinics cannot even meet the minimum standards that outpatient surgical centers are required to meet. Abortionists don’t provide follow-up care for their clients after doing their bloody work. Whenever the abortionists can’t get admitting privileges at the local hospital, women who suffer abortion complications are dumped into local emergency rooms. Is this a pro-woman policy?”
The provisions struck by the Court today were part of a broader pro-life omnibus package passed by the Texas legislature in 2013. Texas HB2 also included National Right to Life model language to protect unborn children who are capable of experiencing great pain when being killed by dismemberment or other late abortion methods. An unborn child is capable of feeling pain by 20 weeks after fertilization and earlier. That provision of the law was unchallenged in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt.
“The Gosnell case in Pennsylvania demonstrated the horrific conditions that can occur in abortion facilities when the state abdicates its responsibility to enforce minimal standards of care,” said Franz. “Several clinics were forced to close following the Pennsylvania probe. It is clear that the lucrative abortion industry is unwilling to police itself. The Supreme Court decision does a disservice to women.”