'Blockbuster' Abortion Case Arrives at Supreme Court

All eyes on Anthony Kennedy
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 2, 2016 8:13 AM CST
'Blockbuster' Abortion Case Arrives at Supreme Court
A procedure room is seen during a tour and event at Whole Woman's Health of San Antonio on Feb. 9, 2016, in San Antonio.   (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

The abortion case being argued in front of the Supreme Court Wednesday isn't only the "biggest case on the topic in nearly a quarter century," the AP notes—it's also the first major case taking place since Justice Antonin Scalia died, and it's happening during an unprecedented presidential campaign. What will be debated in Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt: whether a Texas law that imposes stringent mandates on abortion clinics and doctors who perform abortions infringes on a woman's constitutional right to an abortion. Some takes on the topic:

  • The Washington Post offers a succinct Q&A on the case.
  • CNN notes that everyone will be watching Justice Anthony Kennedy, who's already joined forces with the four liberal justices in blocking some of the restrictions during the case's appeal. CNN looks at Kennedy's position close to the center of the bench—and says "both sides have reason to worry."

  • And mainly to sway Kennedy, more than 100 women—including actress Amy Brenneman, who terminated a pregnancy at age 21—have filed supporting briefs explaining how their abortions "allowed them to control their bodies, plan for the future, and welcome children into their lives when their careers were established and their personal lives were on solid ground," the New York Times reports.
  • The Atlantic ponders whether the Supreme Court will respect precedent in this "blockbuster" case, noting that the Fifth Circuit Court took on the high court's precedent with an attitude verging on "old-fashioned defiance." There's even a comparison of this scenario to My Cousin Vinnie.
  • More than 1,000 people on both sides are expected to stand vigil outside the Supreme Court Wednesday. The Post looks at the dedicated "community of the cold and the wet"—including "feminists [calling] themselves 'big raging liberals,'" as well as the "unapologetically pro-life"—who endured the elements to gain a chance to hear the arguments before the court.
(Two women with the Zika virus received abortions.)

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