06.27.16

Leahy Comment On Supreme Court’s Decision In Whole Woman's Health Case

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.),
Ranking Member, Senate Judiciary Committee,
On The Supreme Court’s Decision
In Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt

June 27, 2016

[In a 5-3 decision Monday in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, the Supreme Court struck down a Texas law imposing two onerous restrictions on abortion providers requiring 1) all doctors performing abortions to have admitting privileges at a local hospital, and 2) all abortions be provided only in medical facilities that meet hospital-grade, ambulatory surgical center standards. The Court held that under its “undue burden” standard established in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, courts must evaluate whether restrictions on abortion, if enacted purportedly for health reasons, do in fact protect women’s health.]

“Today’s Supreme Court decision in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt is an important victory in the face of increasingly extreme attacks on women’s health. The Court struck down an onerous Texas state law that blocked abortion access for millions of women under the pretense of protecting women’s health. The justices recognized the Texas law for what it was – a sham law that had nothing to do with women’s health and everything to do with shutting down women’s access to safe and legal abortion. I believe women – not politicians – should make their own health choices. I am relieved that the Supreme Court reaffirmed this today.

“Even with today’s decision, we know a woman’s right to choose is constantly under attack. We must ensure that women can decide for themselves matters that control their lives and their destiny.”

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