Bush starts to work his magic…

The Supreme Court just released it’s decision to uphold the Federal Abortion Ban of 2003–the first major abortion restriction since Roe vs. Wade. This is a HUGE deal and reflects how Bush’s conservative SC appointments are going to have an effect on women’s rights in the long term.

The ban includes NO exception for the life and health of the mother. And for those of you who are conspiracy theorists–the news of the tragedy at VA Tech will ensure that this news makes little noise.

More at SCOTUSblog


4 thoughts on “Bush starts to work his magic…

  1. DP April 18, 2007 / 3:43 pm

    I think that your post is misleading. This Supreme Court decision does not restrict a woman’s right to have an abortion, but rather affirmed Congress’s 2003 ban on the procedure known as partial birth abortion. This ruling does not limit a woman’s right to have an abortion…it limits a woman’s right to use a particular procedure. I’m in support of a woman’s right to have an abortion, but that being said it is fair and just to set limitations, especially post viability. Need I remind you that Roe v. Wade did not say that a woman can have any kind of abortion she wants whenever she wants to….after viability a state can set restrictions. Have you ever watched a partial birth abortion? A mother’s rights are very important, but a viable fetus deserves rights as well.

  2. radicaldoula April 18, 2007 / 4:04 pm

    Thanks for your comments DP, but I have to disagree. Placing regulations on the type of abortion a woman can have, particularly with a bill whose language is considered so vauge that it could prohibit some first trimester abortions, as well as one that uses medical terminology that is considered medically inaccurate, to me is a serious limit on a woman’s right to abortion.

    This bill was a flagrant attempt by the anti-choice movement to exaggerate a rare and little-used procedure for its own ends—and now the anti-choice judiciary has pandered to it.


    Chapel Hill, North Carolina – Senator John Edwards released the following statement about today’s 5-4 Supreme Court ruling upholding the federal abortion ban.

    “I could not disagree more strongly with today’s Supreme Court decision. The ban upheld by the Court is an ill-considered and sweeping prohibition that does not even take account for serious threats to the health of individual women. This hard right turn is a stark reminder of why Democrats cannot afford to lose the 2008 election. Too much is at stake – starting with, as the Court made all too clear today, a woman’s right to choose.”

    Good to hear someone coming out so strongly against it! Hilary? Obama?

  3. DP April 19, 2007 / 5:26 pm

    Radical Doula,

    If this bill was a flagarant attempt by the anti-choice movement to exaggerate a little known procedure then why did it pass the house 281-142 and the Senate 64-34? Are you implying that anyone who voted for the partial birth abortion pan is anti-choice. You should read the Supreme Court’s opinion….your concerns about prohibiting first term abortions are addressed and answered by Justice Kennedy. The only prohibited procedures are: a procedure in which the doctor: “(A) deliberately and intentionally vaginally delivers a LIVING FETUS until, in the case of a head-first presentation, the entire fetal head is outside the [mother’s] body … , or, in the case of breech presentation, any part of the fetal trunk past the navel is outside the [mother’s] body … , for the purpose of performing an overt act that the person knows will kill the partially delivered living fetus”; and “(B) performs the overt act, other than completion of delivery, that kills the fetus.” Intact D & E cannot be performed during the 1st trimester and the bill is clear to prohibit only intact D & E. Moreover, the medical terminology that you call “inaccurate” is a matter of opinion. In the court’s opinion Justice Kennedy states:

    “The evidence presented in the trial courts and before Congress demonstrates both sides have medical support for their positions. The Court’s precedents instruct that the Act can survive facial attack when this medical uncertainty persists. See, e.g., Kansas v. Hendricks, 521 U. S. 346, 360, n. 3. This traditional rule is consistent with Casey, which confirms both that the State has an interest in promoting respect for human life at all stages in the pregnancy, and that abortion doctors should be treated the same as other doctors. Medical uncertainty does not foreclose the exercise of legislative power in the abortion context any more than it does in other contexts. Other considerations also support the Court’s conclusion, including the fact that safe alternatives to the prohibited procedure, such as D&E, are available. In addition, if intact D&E is truly necessary in some circumstances, a prior injection to kill the fetus allows a doctor to perform the procedure, given that the Act’s prohibition only applies to the delivery of “a living fetus,” 18 U. S. C. §1531(b)(1)(A). Planned Parenthood of Central Mo. v. Danforth, 428 U. S. 52, 77-79, distinguished.”

    Before you go attacking the Supreme Court for placing “serious limits on a woman’s right to abortion” maybe you should step back from the situation and think about the governing legal standard.

    Roe’s three-part essential holding states: “First, a woman has the right to choose to have an abortion before fetal viability and to obtain it without undue interference from the State. Second, the State has the power to restrict abortions after viability, if the law contains exceptions for pregnancies endangering the woman’s life or health. And third, the State has legitimate interests from the pregnancy’s outset in protecting the health of the woman AND THE LIFE OF A FETUS THAT MAY BECOME A CHILD. 505 U. S., at 846.

    A woman’s right to an abortion is not absolute. Congress and the States have acted to prohibit partial birth abortion of a living fetus. If you disagree then maybe you should turn your attention to the policy makers– the democrats and republicans that united to vote in favor of the ban in 2003.

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