Supreme Court rejects Planned Parenthood bid to block Arkansas abortion law
WASHINGTON, D.C., May 29, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) -- The United States Supreme Court will not prevent Arkansas from enforcing a 2015 law regulating medication abortions, despite Planned Parenthood’s wishes.
On Tuesday, the court issued without comment an order rejecting the abortion giant’s request to block a 2015 law that requires physicians who dispense abortion-inducing drugs to have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals. The decision enables the law to take effect in the middle of July as lawmakers originally intended, though Planned Parenthood intends to continue challenging it in lower courts.
"The Arkansas restriction, which was enacted supposedly to protect women's health, is medically unnecessary," the abortion giant’s attorneys argued to the Supreme Court. Lawyers for the state responded that the “commonsense” law "merely requires medication abortion providers to have a contractual relationship (to ensure follow-up treatment if needed) with a physician that has admitting privileges.”
Planned Parenthood fears that the law would force the closure of its Little Rock and Fayetteville facilities, which only perform medication abortions. They say obstetricians will not agree to the contract. But pro-lifers have warned that chemical abortions, which have grown nearly as common as surgical abortions in recent years, are dangerous to mothers as well as to their babies.
A federal trial judge had previously blocked the law, although his decision was reversed by an appeals court panel that faulted him for failing to ascertain just how many women would be affected by the law.
"There is no right to choose medication abortion,” Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge told the Supreme Court.
Sometime next month, the Supreme Court is also expected to issue its ruling on a California law forcing pro-life pregnancy centers to advertise abortions.