Last Thursday, the Supreme Court temporarily blocked a law that would have limited doctors in Louisiana to providing abortions only if they had “admitting privileges” to a hospital within 30 miles. Trump-appointed Justices Brett Kavanaugh and Neil Gorsuch dissented, voting to put the law into effect.
If the law had been implemented, only one doctor in the state of Louisiana would have been able to perform abortions. However, several other doctors would have had the option of applying for admitting privileges and would therefore have been able, if successful, to continue conducting abortions. (For more about how hospital admitting privileges work, see here.)
The justices who voted to block the law were Justices Elena Kagan, Sonia Sotomayor, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer and John Roberts. Besides Justice Kavanaugh, Justices Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, and Neil Gorsuch also dissented. Kavanaugh was the only justice to explain the reason for his vote, and none of the other dissenting justices joined him.
The Louisiana law is not permanently blocked, but merely put on hold until it is appealed before the Supreme Court. If it accepts the case, SCOTUS will likely not review it until the end of this year or the beginning of next.
This ruling comes as the national debate on abortion intensifies. Certain states throughout the country, such as Virginia and New York, have recently passed or introduced controversial legislation that removes various restrictions on late-term abortions.
Influencing these laws is concern from abortion advocates that the Supreme Court could overturn Roe v. Wade as the result of President Trump’s appointment of Justices Kavanaugh and Gorsuch.
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Source: Church Leaders