The Supreme Court announced this morning that it has agreed to hear Louisiana's Act 620, the 2014 law that requires abortion clinics to have a physician with admitting privileges at a local hospital in case of emergencies.
The justices will likely hear oral arguments this winter with a decision coming in June 2020.
The High Court met this week to decide what cases it will hear this term. So far, it has not announced whether it will consider the component of Indiana's HE 1337 that requires abortionists to provide women with the opportunity to view an ultrasound of their child at least 18 hours prior to performing abortion.
“We look forward to the Supreme Court reviewing Louisiana's 2014 Unsafe Abortion Protection Act,” said Benjamin Clapper, Executive Director for Louisiana Right to Life. “Abortion facilities should not be provided loopholes when it comes to health and safety standards that apply across the board to outpatient surgical facilities.”
Carol Tobias, president of National Right to Life, told NRL News Today, “The abortion industry says abortion is safe yet they oppose any and all regulations that attempt to protect women seeking an abortion.” Tobias added, “I hope members of the Supreme Court will ask themselves, What is wrong with these abortionists that they can't get admitting privileges at a local hospital?”
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10 week old fetus
Learn about Kentucky’s Dismemberment Law.
[In a motion on Wed., Aug. 21] Planned Parenthood is asking a federal judge to hold Gov. Matt Bevin and top state health officials in contempt of court over what it alleges are repeated violations of court orders regarding its effort to get a license to provide abortions in Louisville…
“It is clear," the motion said, "that the defendants are engaging in self-help by ignoring this court's orders in hopes of a win on appeal in the sixth circuit.”
Wednesday's motion is the second time Planned Parenthood has asked the court to hold the Bevin administration in contempt over its long-running battle to get the license. Read more
It seems obvious that Kentucky would engage in self-help by appealing the case to the Sixth District Court of Appeals after losing it in the lower court. That is standard procedure, so how could it be viewed as ‘contempt’?
The C-J reports:
The Bevin administration is once again blocking Planned Parenthood from having a license to operate an abortion clinic at its building in downtown Louisville… Planned Parenthood announced the decision in a release late Friday night…
Chad Meredith (addressing the media), our state’s Chief Deputy General Counsel, argued to retain Transfer Agreements law in Kentucky at the Sixth Circuit Federal Appeals Court on August 8. Background on this case is here.
Many pro-lifers including KRLA staff and members heard the arguments and later participated in a media conference staged by Addia Wuchner, former representative for Ky’s 66th district. Reporters from WDRB-TV, the C-J and others covered the event and LifeNews has reported on it drawing from a story in CourtHouseNews.com.
Listen to the full proceedings from the hearing. As noted by CourtHouseNews, there is no timetable for the decision to be issued. Three judges heard the arguments by Atty. Meredith and attorneys for the EMW Clinic and Planned Parenthood. Two of them, Judges Chad Readler and Joan Larsen are recent appointees of President Trump. Judge Eric Clay was appointed by President Bill Clinton in 1997.
Aside: Congratulations to Attorney Meredith who was recently promoted to Solicitor General. Read more.
Sixth and final in the Amici series
When Planned Parenthood (PP) could not get a Transfer Agreement (TA) with any hospital in Louisville, it got one with U of Ky. in Lexington and Clark Memorial Hospital in Indiana. These were considered by the Bevin Administration (BA) too far from PP or in the case of Clark Co., not in Kentucky, which has the duty of oversight for the TA providers. Its jurisdiction does not extend to Indiana.
AG Beshear’s Argument 1 is that a state cannot rely on another state to protect a woman’s 14th amendment right. That was in response to the BA statement during the trial that a woman can get an abortion in Indiana, Tennessee, Ohio, etc., which is already true given that Kentucky currently only has one abortion clinic, the EMW in Louisville.
Thus, AG Beshear’s statements that Kentucky should let Indiana contract with PP in Louisville for a TA, but should not consider other state’s abortion clinics to be suitable for Kentucky women, seem contradictory.
Argument 2A says that “The BA has unduly burdened women seeking to exercise their constitutional rights” and 2B states that TAs “provide no benefit to clinic patients.” We disagree.
Regarding Argument 2A, as stated above, women currently do get abortions in nearby areas over state lines, which shows they are not unduly burdened in their pursuit of an abortion.
As for 2B, we lobbied for TAs way back in the 1990s, and have never reversed our position on this important service for women.
We urge the judges of the Sixth Circuit Court to uphold Kentucky Law.
Fifth in the Amici series
In the Amicus, Gov. Bevin is accused by our AG of seeking to place in his budget “a provision excluding state funding for any ‘affiliate’ of abortion facilities, which caused [U of L Hospital’s parent company] KentuckyOne* to believe that its state funding would be jeopardized by a transfer agreement (TA) between U of L Hospital and any abortion clinic.” (In business law an affiliate is not part of the company with whom it affiliates. Thus, unless UofL Hospital owned Planned Parenthood or vice versa, there is no formal affiliation that could be stated. By law, an affiliate of PP would be a direct subsidiary.)
The media carried a false story that the Governor’s office had pressured UofL to cancel its TA with Planned Parenthood. During the trial, representatives of KentuckyOne stated categorically that no one in the Bevin administration had pressured them to cancel the TA.
Kentucky’s attorneys brought out that the state is not opposed whatsoever to TAs —which state law requires; it was simply a matter that the existing TAs were not legal documents. How would a contract with a hospital department be legal? (See post 2 of the series.)
Kentucky law also states that public funds may not go toward paying for abortion services. This statute was on the books as early as 1980. Thus, UofL Hospital does not perform abortions but, needless to say, it would be lawful for it to assist in saving the life of a woman who was damaged by an abortion.
In 2017 the “no public funds for abortion” statute was revised to permit re-ordering of who is eligible for funds, and this year President Trump further adjusted that policy so TAs may be the least of PP’s worries at this time.
The Trump Administration’s new final regulations for the federal Title X family planning program make significant changes to the program and will:
- Block the availability of federal funds to family planning providers that also offer abortion services;
- Prohibit sites that participate in Title X from referring pregnant clients to abortion providers;
- Eliminate current requirements for Title X sites to provide non-directive pregnancy options counseling that includes information about prenatal care/delivery, adoption, and abortion;
- Prioritize providers that offer comprehensive primary health care services over those that specialize in reproductive health services; and
- Encourage participation by “non-traditional” organizations such as those that only offer one method of family planning, such as fertility awareness-based methods.
The American Medical Association, AGs of many states, PP, and others have filed suit in federal court to block the new Title X regulations, stating that they violate the Constitution and federal law.
And on it goes.
*In June 2017 the UofL Hospital split from KentuckyOne and currently is managed by UofL’s University Medical Center.
TAGSPolitical Action Transfer Agreement Artists for Life Pro-life Events Euthanasia D&E Law Appeal Eugenics Legislation Ultrasound Law Appeal Planned Parenthood PEOPLE Video Louisville
Links of interest
A Ryan Bomberger Meme. Click to read about President Trump's website to counter social media censorship.
ATTENTION HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS! Click to learn more about the 2020 Contest.
“…Gov. Matt Bevin's administration has started its appeal of a federal judge's ruling that struck down a state abortion law...(HB454)” Thank you, Gov. Bevin!https://t.co/gCOtl9DZ0A— KY Right to Life (@KentuckyRTL) May 16, 2019