Supreme Court

Supreme Court Strikes Down Texas Abortion Restrictions

Abortion regulations overruled in Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt


Phil Roeder /

In 2013 the state of Texas passed one of the strictest anti-abortion laws in the United States. Today the U.S. Supreme Court struck down two central components of that law.

At issue in Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt was whether Texas exceeded its lawful regulatory powers when it enacted two provisions from the state law known as H.B. 2. The first provision required all abortion clinics in the state to meet the same standards required of ambulatory surgical centers. The second provision required all doctors who perform abortions in the state to have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals.

Texas justified its restrictions in the name of health and safety and urged the Supreme Court to defer to the state's regulatory stance. Whole Woman's Health argued that the restrictions were "the epitome of unnecessary health regulations" and served as a convenient pretext for driving lawful abortion providers out of business.

Today the U.S. Supreme Court ruled against the state of Texas by a vote of 5-3. "We conclude that neither of these provisions offers medical benefits sufficient to justify the burdens upon access that each imposes," observed the majority opinion of Justice Stephen Breyer. "Each places a substantial obstacle in the path of women seeking a previability abortion, each constitutes an undue burden on abortion access, and each violates the Federal Constitution."

Writing in dissent, Justice Clarence Thomas maintained that the majority's decision "ignores compelling evidence that Texas' law imposes no unconstitutional burden." Thomas also objected that "today's decision perpetuates the Court's habit of applying different rules to different constitutional rights— especially the putative right to abortion."

Also writing in dissent, Justice Samuel Alito, joined by Justice Thomas and Chief Justice John Roberts, argued that the Supreme Court had no business hearing this dispute in the first place. "Determined to strike down two provisions of a new Texas abortion statute in all of their applications, the Court simply disregards basic rules that apply in all other cases," Alito wrote.

The Supreme Court's decision in Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt is available here.

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  1. So, it has come to this.

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  2. Is there anything that can't be attributed to women's health?

    1. Not really, it's sort of like the commerce clause in the way it justifies whatever they want.

      1. Oh, please. What is a greater issue to women's health than Climate Change?

  3. I wonder what the world would be like if anti-abortion folks put their money and time into providing prenatal care and adoption services for women with unwanted pregnancies rather than trying to sneak abortion bans through the back door.

    1. They also provide a lot of that.

      1. But not to those icky gays, who are a big market for adoptions. Gay people - taking care of straight people's problems for, like, ever.

        1. I agree with your sentiment, Tonio. Those agencies need to put the baby before their religion.

          1. But if they put baby before religion, that may be one less brain-washed ass that can be put in a pew to suck dry with the collection plate. We must always protect future tax-free earnings.

            1. Prohibitions always fail! The present ones are used to fill prisons. I hate the thought of abortion. Yet, there are even grounds under the Bible that has no rules pertaining to this. The fetus and the infant under a certain age are classified differently than older children and adults. Abortion certainly does not look at the potential child's right to his, or her, life.

        2. Thanks for the red herring.

    2. I wonder what the world would be like if pro-abortion folks put their time and money into providing over-the-counter birth control to women.

      1. Fewer lamborghini sales to abortionists, and less taxpayer dollars in their wallets too.

      2. why do you hate women?

      3. They also provide a lot of that.

        1. As far as I know all forms of birth control - other than Plan B - require a doctor's prescription.

          1. ohh and to think I've been getting my condoms illegally all these years... opps.

            1. That is exactly what I was talking about. Nice!

      4. Are there really any pro-abortion folks out there? Are there people saying abortion is always the right answer? I know pro-lifer's are against abortion, period. Pro-choicer's feel it is up to a woman whether or not to. But have never heard of a pro-abortionist.

        1. There are actually people who believe abortion is not just one of many legitimate choices, but a *morally positive* choice, because it reduces overpopulation, gets rid of icky brown people, lessens welfare burdens (so they claim), etc. I would call these people "pro-abortion", yes.

          1. I would also add those with a pecuniary interest in providing abortions are likely to be "pro-abortion." But the libertarians on here who are "pro-choice" are just that: pro-choice. They don't necessarily see abortion itself as some force for good, they just believe that the woman's right to control her body outweighs the fetus' right to live. I disagree with them on a first-principles basis, but their beliefs are certainly logical and consistent with libertarianism.

            1. Natural rights are equal rights; when in conflict they require rules lawyering.

              Everyone hates a rules lawyer.

        2. So you're saying you haven't met Nikki.

          Stay gold Ponyboy

        3. Most people on the left that say they are pro-choice show themselves to actually only be pro-abortion. Usually by advocating for the continuation of the drug war, banning of vaping, and telling you how big your soda can be.

        4. Billy- Show me one "pro-choice" progtard who actually is pro-choice on anything except abortion.

          They will say "30K died from guns last year!" But 20k were suicides? "So, it's still bad!" Not pro-choice, just pro-abortion.

          Heroin vending machines on every corner? Progtards say, "Noway!" Not pro-choice, just pro-abortion.

          Can I opt to sell my labor for less than $15/hr? Progtards say I'm being exploited and shouldn't be allowed to make that decision. Not pro-choice, just pro-abortion.

          Etc., etc., etc.

        5. But have never heard of a pro-abortionist.

          There are a few

      5. As a former physician, I question the reasoning for not having OTC oral contraceptives, to begin with. The "yearly" visits are actually needed much less often in most women. PAP-s are not needed yearly, even if they use OCP-s!

    3. Sneaking in through the back door obviates the need for abortion services, dunnit?

      1. Not always. Look at the circumstances of Winston's birth.

    4. You may have noticed that some people can walk and chew gum at the same time.

      The prolifers operate pregnancy care centers, as anyone could learn by reading the prochoice propaganda about how these centers need to be closed.

      If prolifers weren't providing prenatal care and adoption, there would be nothing for the choicers to close down.

      1. If not closed, at least the government should warn patients away from them, according to choicers.

        "If those prolifers were *serious,* they'd be doing all this stuff we're trying to stop them from doing!"

      2. Except few CPCs actually provide prenatal care, adoption aid, or even baby supplies for new mothers. Most start with a pregnancy step and stop with "you should keep the baby".

        That's why folks oppose 'em: they present as if they can actually providing meaningful help, fail to deliver that help, and most will lie their asses off about abortion in their persuasion attempts.

        1. Kind of like how Planned Parenthood claims to offer a bunch of services that they don't actually provide, but instead refer out to other groups?

          Not seeing a huge difference there, really.

    5. A lot of Pro-Life groups do, in fact, put a great deal of time and energy into prenatal care and adoption se vices. They never receive any notice for it unless somebody manages to figure out a way to spin. Aganst them.

      Similarly, if the Pro-Choice groups had put enough time into policing theor own to prevent the Kermit Gosnell Grand Guignol from becoming such a scandal, the Pro-Life groups would not have so much sweet reason on their side when they pass laws demanding that abortion clinics meet higher standards of sanitation and safety.

      The Supreme Court is flat out wrng on this one. It is none of the Federal givernment's goddamnd business if a state chooses to make abortion providers meet the same standards that are applied to other ambulatory surgical practices.

      1. I'm curious what outweighs what, and on what scale; safety, or access. So far, it appears to be whatever gives the greater amount of political leverage at the time, which isn't surprising, but this is a case of making abortion less safe on at least a marginal level and people are cheering.

        So really, I'm curious. What is the line of 'burdensome regulation' on this issue, and where does that start to trump safety? I'm guessing it's somewhere before 'hobo in a back alley with a coat hanger' and somewhere under 'Ambulatory Surgical Centers'. (Which, as I understand things, ambulatory surgical center is more-or-less what an abortion would qualify as.)

        I'll be 100% honest, I think the push for more access won't stop until there are regular RN's going to appointments at people's homes in an abortion van. You might think I'm kidding, but you would be wrong. That being said, the admitting privileges regulation I would view as onerous. I don't know for sure, but I'm guessing M.D.'s that do abortions are individual practitioners and not part of a system, therefore they would probably not have those privilege's. That's a B.S. requirement on the provider. The ASC requirement, while of questionable added value, doesn't seem quite as clear cut but I don't have much experience in that type of practice.

        Perhaps Groovus has the answer on that, but I sure don't.

      2. If these regulations are already applied to other out-patient surgical centers, why is it unconstitutional to apply them to abortion providers?

        Texas should call their bluff. If these really are "the epitome of unnecessary health regulations" then no one needs them - repeal the regulations on all other centers, and let's see if the pro-choice crowd agrees with deregulation.

      3. If the laws in question had restricted themselves to clinics that perform surgical abortions, they would have been much more defensible. But they didn't. They also applied to clinics that exclusively provided medication abortions. You know, the sort where you pop a pill and go home, and if anything goes wrong it's hours after you've left the clinic.

        1. That sounds like a valid argument. I do want consistency - the regulations should be the same for the same types or procedures, and here we're talking out-patient surgery. Maybe Texas can recraft the law to fall under new guidelines

        2. As I mentioned I'm not super familiar with the various forms of abortion, or provider types, but there are so many ridiculously burdensome regulations on healthcare that I fail to see how this is the straw that broke the camels back. That's why I'd love to hear when exactly it goes over the line, because that would be where a sane man puts the law. Sadly, a good law isn't what's wanted. Without this pet issue they couldn't drive voters with scare tactics. (On both sides, obviously.)

          As a side note it's worth noting that since this doesn't fall under enumerated powers or the bill of rights I'd love to read more about how it's unconstitutional. I'll just need to read the decision when I have more time myself, but I'd almost put money on Commerce Clause FYTW.

    6. Wouldn't kill the pro-abortion to do the same, you know. On account of them believing abortion should be safe, legal, and rare.

      1. Oh, no, they don't care about points 1 and 3. Those don't keep taxpayer dollars flowing into their coffers.

      2. I'm of the opinion Margaret Sanger, and/or those around her, thought it would be an invaluable tool in keeping the numbers of 'inferior' people under control.

        When looking at the numbers, and when considering who she and many other supporters considered 'inferior', it would seem at face value to be doing exactly what they envisioned; culling the population of African Americans.

        I've only done a bit of cursory research over the years on that, but I'm welcome to an alternate explanation that doesn't involve legalized ethnic cleansing. Perhaps they should pass a law where abortions need to be equal across races? So that once you hit a cut off point for African American you'll need to make up for it with some white babies, then perhaps some Asians or the Irish?

        I mean, I'm just thinking of the Blood God here. It needs a varied diet.

    7. "I wonder what the world would be like"

      I wonder what the world would be like if this and other political discussions didn't always devolve into inane false dichotomies.

    8. What a great red herring and straw man wrapped into one steamy, delicious dish.

    9. I'm actually a pro-life libertarian. Given that, I refuse to even consider any bans on abortions, of any kind, under any circumstances, until birth-control is available without a prescription, over-the-counter, with no age restriction or parental consent need to obtain it.

  4. Good, I assume the same legal reasoning will be applied to regulations of gun sales and gun shops, etc.?

    1. What is the gun shop to abortion clinic ratio in TX. About one, right?

      1. Women seeking abortions should be entered into a permanent government database, right?

        1. And they should be refused an abortion if they are on certain watch lists. There should also be limits on the number of abortions a woman can have and she shouldn't be allowed to conceal the fact that she has had one.

          1. And the waiting period. Don't forget the waiting period.

            1. My initial proposal was a year and a half, but I'm willing to bring that down to nine months.

              Why do you hate compromise you extremist biggot?

        2. only if they own guns

          1. How about if they own a printing press?

            1. Those are constitutionally protected - if they're single sheet, hand-typeset, mechanical presses.

            2. Do they use it for printing out copies of the constitution? We should probably keep an eye on the ones spreading extremist ideas.

        3. You didn't answer the question. Out of the two liberties-- the ability to have an abortion and the ability to own a firearm-- is under systematic attack. Can you identify which one?

          1. The ability to own a firearm. Duh.

            1. Also, last I checked, abortions killed a crapton more people than legal guns (or even illegal guns) in this country.

              1. So we need to confuse the statisticians here and start conducting abortions via firearms, MeThinks... Confound the statisticians, I says!

            2. It is? So the ratio of firearms dealers to abortion clinics is like 0.00001, right? Poor AR-15 dealer... He's a dying institution.

              1. I thought you asked which right was under systematic attack, not which right was exercised more often.

                1. Dean, AmSoc owns a set of patented mobile goalposts to make his favorite argument technique easier.

              2. "AR-15 dealer"

                It's telling that you believe this is a thing.

                1. "Dealer"

                  *guy walks into a gun store with the shakes, his eyes a little sunken, wearing a dirty gray hoodie in the middle of august*

                  "Do you have any Ar-15's man? I really need a fix." Absentmindedly scratches the backs of his hands. "Or maybe some Glocks?"

                  AmSoc, retard extraordinaire.

              3. "AR-15 dealer"

                It's funny that you believe this is a thing.

                1. Damn squirrels.

                2. He probably doesn't even know the difference between semi-auto and auto. What a punk.

              4. 300 to 500 million firearms - maybe 5000 a year are used to kill another person

                Every single successful abortion kills another person.

                1. Last time I looked abortion was the #1 cause of preventable death in the United States. That of course assumes you consider them people at all.

                  Wait! No! I wasn't talking about minorities just a phase of the life cycle!

          2. Courts routinely strike down abortion restrictions. Not so for firearms.

            1. Even though abortions are much more deadly.

    2. LOL yeah right. these days unenumerated rights get far more protection than enumerated ones....

  5. Thomas also objected that "today's decision perpetuates the Court's habit of applying different rules to different constitutional rights? especially the putative right to abortion."

    So says the man who routinely ignores the 4th amendment because drugs are bad and cops are good.

  6. Having some right-wing Jeebus-lover dictate which doctor a women should go to doesn't matter to me. Who is responsible for editorial content at this liberal rag?

    1. It's just a matter of reasonable, common-sense regulations. Who could object to that?

      1. Exactly. These regulations aren't any different than those applied to other forms of medical care. The left is living in a dream world if they don't think Texas is about to be inundated with scores of for-profit, unregulated abortion clinics and all the damage that will be caused as people try to cash in...

        1. Those other forms of medical care are also over-regulated. And this finding doesn't remove all of Texas' abortion regulations, only the two new ones. Do you honestly believe that Texas was inundated with for-profit, unregulated abortion clinics back in 2013?

          1. It must have been so inundated if they were less regulated than other forms of medical care.

            1. It must have been so inundated if they were less regulated than other forms of medical care.

              That's a non sequitur, if I've ever seen one. Do you even know what the word "inundated" means?

              1. Yes, it means flooded, or overwhelmed. Texas is literally about to be flooded with for-profit, unregulated abortion clinics that will overwhelm public hospitals with expenses while capitalist doctors vacation at their beach houses. It's the only logical conclusion. We regulate health care for a reason!

                1. Okay, that's got to be sarcasm...

                  1. This whole tread was sarcasm. You may need to get your meter tested.

    2. Having some right-wing Jeebus-lover dictate which doctor a women should go to doesn't matter to me.

      Every right thinking person knows that lefty bureaucrats should dictate which doctors men and women go to.

    3. Having some right-wing Jeebus-lover dictate which doctor a women should go to left-wing Stalin-apologist dictate anything doesn't matter to me.

  7. Thomas also objected that "today's decision perpetuates the Court's habit of applying different rules to different constitutional rights? especially the putative right to abortion when I don't want them to."

    Fixed that for ya there, Yerroner. And let me just say that you're an intelligent black man who earned his job on merit, and also a fucking arse end.

  8. Thomas also objected that "today's decision perpetuates the Court's habit of applying different rules to different constitutional rights? especially the putative right to abortion when I don't want them to."

    Fixed that for ya there, Yerroner. And let me just say that you're an intelligent black man who earned his job on merit, and also a fucking arse end.

  9. Whole Woman's Health argued that the restrictions were "the epitome of unnecessary health regulations" and served as a convenient pretext

    I'd argue that the federal regulation preventing people from buying insurance across state lines is the epitome of unnecessary health regulations. I'd also argue that high health care costs caused, in part, by federal regulation served as a convenient pretext to ban free association in the health insurance market.

  10. Breyer doesn't think the Second Amendment protects an individual right, and he thinks that in any case the right to keep and bear arms can be restricted in "high crime urban areas" (wink, wink).

    But of course he also thinks abortion *is* an individual right - it's right there in the abortion clause.

    1. It's the hidden amendment i, which covers health care association, but no other forms of association.

      1. It's also the only form of commerce that Congress doesn't have the power to regulate, for some reason.

  11. I like the part where fathers have a say in the abortion. You know, like if they wanted to do something crazy like let the child live and be dad and all that backwoodsy stuff.

    1. I'll support the father having a say when we have the technology to safely extract the fetus and raise in a surrogate of some kind. Until then, the mother is ~100% responsible because the father only contributed one cell, and it was a tiny one at that.

      1. If all the father's done is contributed one cell, then child support should amount to one penny.

        1. Don't you see, that one cell carried only responsibilities and not rights.

          1. Look, I'll put it this way. Were y'all offended when Hillary said, "Women have always been the primary victims of war"?

            Now run that same feeling through this scenario instead.

            1. If the father gets no input with regards to the fate of his child, how do you justify the eighteen to twenty-five years of brutal treatment he gets from the state because of the woman's decision after intercourse?

              1. how do you justify the eighteen to twenty-five years of brutal treatment he gets from the state because of the woman's decision after intercourse?

                Dude. UCS. Have you met me?

                I mean, no, obviously, we've never sat and chilled over beers in person, but Christ. I like to think that after, at this point, years of reading each other's thoughts and randoms, you would not ask me why I justify government brutalization.

                Name me one time I did so. I would like the chance to apologize for arguing in favor of bad government actors.

                1. In context it certainly sounded like the position you were moving towards.

                  This is why I brought it out. Your analogy implied that anyone defending fathers who've been denied a say in their child's existance while being equally unable to determine their own liability was equivalent to those arguing that mouring women were more victims than the dead guy.

                  If this implication was unintentional, I do appologise, but it was there.

                  1. Only in your head. It was not in mine.

                    This is why you hardly ever see people change their minds. Most of us can't even hear what the other person is saying through the noise in our own heads. Either we already agree, or BZZT *static* *crackle* mrrphwump.

            2. The analogy only holds if you think parents are victims because they are parents.

            3. Actually, Hillary's illogic works the same way here: "Women have always been the primary victims of war abortion."

              You know, not the men fetuses.

              1. And again.

                I did not state the primary victims of abortion were women. You decided to see that. And so you did.

                We're so far 0/2 for people paying any attention to what I actually said.

                1. I am paying attention; I gave you a straight answer in my first response, which is that neither parent is a victim merely in becoming a parent, even if he or she didn't want to become one. So your analogy is totally irrelevant.

                  Speaking for Uncivil and myself, we're offended by the double-standard currently enshrined in our constitutional law.

                2. We're so far 0/2 for people paying any attention to what I actually said.

                  Or what you were trying to say didn't match the words on the page.

                  So please, elaborate.

            4. Because it left them widows?

        2. If all the father's done is contributed one cell, then child support should amount to one penny.

          Sounds about right.

          1. Great. All I really want is some moral consistency.

      2. I'll support the father having a say when we have the technology to safely extract the fetus and raise in a surrogate of some kind.

        We have that today. Its called "Caesarian Section", and past a certain gestation age, the surrogate is called a "NICU".

        Damned expensive, though.

        1. what you're saying is that she should pay for it in that case? Seems...oddly fair in a twisted kind of way. More so than now, which is perhaps the most ridiculous part.

  12. "We conclude that neither of these provisions offers medical benefits sufficient to justify the burdens upon access that each imposes,"

    The Court has repeatedly said it's not going to second-guess the legislature and the executive-branch agencies as far as whether or not a given regulation is wise but only on whether or not they have the right to regulate. There are thousands of regulations the Court could be looking at if their standard is a cost/benefit analysis, but just try getting a case on such grounds in front of them - they'll laugh in your face. Thomas is right that abortion seems to be a special class of protected right but I think he has it wrong if he thinks that's an argument against protecting the right to an abortion rather than a damn good argument for protecting all the other rights. Every regulation the government has infringes on the right to live your life, exercise your liberty, engage in the pursuit of happiness as you see fit and the government better have a damn good justification for infringing your rights. It's a burden of proof thing - the Court says the government can do whatever it wants and it's up to you to prove they can't if you want to challenge their authority when it should be that the government has to prove it's exercising proper authority.

    1. The problem is the Court's different levels of scrutiny; the justices only "second-guess" regulations aimed at "fundamental rights," i.e., rights that the Court chooses to recognize.

    2. And to really drive home the double standard, note that the majority didn't overturn the surgical center standards for surgical centers themselves. Just surgical centers that provided abortions. The majority has actually contorted abortion into some special, constitutionally protected form of surgery that is different from other forms of surgery.

      1. Boom, absolutely this.

      2. In all fairness the goal of pretty much all surgery is that no one dies in the procedure.

        Ergo this probably is a special case.

  13. "We conclude that neither of these provisions offers medical benefits sufficient to justify the burdens upon access that each imposes,"

    Damn. I wish other regulations would get that kind of scrutiny.

    1. This. A thousand times, this. How many local and state regulations would fail under similar scrutiny? Uber and Lift may want to think about expanding their business models...

      1. Ninety-five percent of the laws get rational basis scrutiny, which means the laws' victims have to prove to the Court that these laws are so totally, completely, and utterly irrational that the justices themselves could not think of a rational reason for those laws' existence. In other words, those laws are never struck down.

        1. Almost never. SCOTUS has struck down laws under rational-basis scrutiny when the laws are totally out in left field, by which I mean that the affected class has the Court's sympathy.

          1. OK, I'll grant you that. I forgot about, for example, Romer v. Evans. In that case, the Court struck down a state referendum that would have amended a state constitution to prevent LGBTQ members from receiving protection under the state's public accommodation laws. The Court has held that laws aimed at sexual orientation receive only rational basis scrutiny, so the Court applied it. And, the Court struck down the referendum, stating that laws denying equal protection on the basis of animus are never rational.

            Of course, Scalia, in his dissent, rightly argued that the Court wasn't applying rational basis scrutiny correctly - there was a rational basis for the amendment: protection of businesses from suit under public accommodation laws. It didn't matter if the amendment's proponents' real motivation was animus toward gays, because that's how rational basis review works.*

            In short, the Court, as everyone knows, is completely inconsistent. 'Cause FYTW.

            *In my world, there would have been no case or controversy because no public accommodation laws would exist in the first place.

  14. I suspect the real overreach here (once you grant that actual ambulatory surgery centers should be regulated as they are), was including medical abortions as well as surgical abortions. Its hard for me to see a strong enough distinction between an office that does surgical abortions, and an ASC, to justify regulating the latter but not the former.

    It is odd, though, that the court didn't exercise the now well-established judicial power of amending legislation so that it passes constitutional muster to save this law, as the courts are apparently bound to do. What's the phrase?

    "Its not the court's job to save the people from the consequences of their political actions"? Something like that?

    1. RC,

      Will the Supremes apply this same reasoning to outpatient services covered under Medicare? CMS has tried to impose very strict physician supervision requirements on outpatient psych therapy (read, old people playing bingo) ostensibly for patient well being. The real reason was CMS cannot afford to pay for stupid Medicare psych programs that have popped up all over the country.

      And how is abortion a constitutional right of the individual, even though it is not mentioned in the constitution? The founders would have found the concept abhorrent. And yet no regulation can ever be found valid that regulates abortion. Yet, the right to own firearms is enshrined in our bill of rights but any and every regulation concocted by liberal man is almost always found valid.

  15. Glad to see this struck down. Those of us living in TX knew it was very ovious that these requirements were simply a ruse to curb abortions in the state.

      1. Morally, the pro-life side needs to be more honest; I understand they're trying to comply with the rules set out in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, but the pro-lifers still look pretty shifty.

        1. Why?

          In an earlier abortion thread, some dude boasted of all the exceptions the Supreme Court drew up to allow regulation of abortion. Therefore everything was OK and prolifers should be happy.

          But when prolifers actually try to make use of this Supreme Court - granted permission, it's all OMG prolifers are sinister and evil!

          Which is it?

          1. I'm talking about the "woman's health" rationales they offer for some abortion restrictions. Hard to call those examples of good faith. However, like I said, the "woman's health" angle is one of the few that can withstand constitutional scrutiny, so it makes legal sense for pro-lifers to try. I just don't like the duplicity.

            1. Prolifers get to do what choicers cannot, which is protect both the woman *and* the child. Choicers have their minds blown by this, because they themselves certainly can't claim in good faith that they want to protect both.

          2. It's not fair to blame this person for what others have said.

            if you're going to argue about the logical contradictions in SC rulings and elsewhere in the legal system, then you really have no argument because both sides can make the same case.

            1. I doubt See Double You has made the argument I cited - "look at all the protections the Supreme Court allows the state to give the fetus!" - I'm just saying I have to deal with both that argument *and* the argument that prolifers are evil for taking advantage of those very Supreme Court decisions.

              And to say that prolifers should know in advance which laws the Supreme Court will uphold and which it will declare to be violations of the "right to abortion" - the only way to find out what the Supreme Court will allow is to pass the laws and wait the result of a challenge.

  16. RE: Supreme Court Strikes Down Texas Abortion Restrictions

    I would like to make two proposals.
    1. Eliminate the USSC. The asinine decisions they have made are too numerous to mention. The justices are given a lifetime appointment who rarelyare answerable to their decisions. Too many of these justices have no clue as to the purpose of the US Constitution. For example, Justice Ginsburg (SP?) has stated that she only cares about applying "social justice" to her decisions. Really? Her oath of office was to interpret the US Constitution and apply it to her decisions and not apply social justice. Justices too often make terrible decisions and still answer to no one. The answer to this problem is to have the justices be elected every four years and be held accountable for their decisions. This way, at least, the people of the United Statescan have some say on the justices' decisions.

    2. As we eliminate the USSC, we allow the states' supreme court decisions to be the final decision on a legal case.
    Why nine justices (or less) who live in their own little world in DC should decide matters on what goes on in possibly thousands of miles away is unacceptable. It's like have a too powerful bureaucracy from DC telling someone in Oregon on how to manage their environment.

    I'm recognize both of these proposals will not be made policy, but if they were, I'm sure the states will be much better off.

    1. Not going to happen. What should happen is a restructuring of SCOTUS and its responsibilities. But I do not trust anyone in power to make such a restructuring. The end result is more likely to be a politburo than a respectable court of limited power.

      1. I agree this will not happen.
        What a tragedy that is.
        A political entity that is not answerable to the electorate.
        What do you mean "a restructuring of the SCOTUS and its responsibilities?" Can you give an example?
        With all due respect, I have reason to believe we already have a Politburo in power.
        It's called the Senate and the House of Representatives.
        I think you mean a Soviet Supreme Court.

        1. Things like this:

          1. Justices should serve definite terms. The vaunted insulation from political influence has not manifested as well as envisioned. I think there are benefits to them being there for awhile, but they peter out after a few years. Give em a decade or two, tops.

          2. The functions and powers of the Court should be more explicitly defined and curtailed. For example, he Court should generally not be empowered to overturn state laws. The Congress has the power to sanction the state and its officers if necessary.

          3. The upholding of laws that constrain the liberty of the people should require a unanimous vote of the Justices. The Congress can appropriate funds and regulate the operation of government with some prerogative; but the regulation of private action must be held to higher scrutiny.

          You are right that politburo isn't quite the right word. But I do think we are better with the Court than without it; it is just that the Court has overstepped its bounds.

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