Supreme Court Dumps Texas' Tough Abortion Laws

Justices vote 5-3 that clinic regulations are unconstitutional
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 27, 2016 9:37 AM CDT
Activists demonstrate in front of the Supreme Court in Washington on Monday as the justices close out the term, with expected decisions on abortion, guns, and public corruption.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

(Newser) – In what the AP is calling the Supreme Court's "biggest abortion case in nearly a quarter century," a 5-3 vote Monday has deemed Texas' restrictions on abortion clinics unconstitutional, refuting the state's assertion that these regulations were medically necessary to protect women's health. These rules—which mandated that doctors who perform abortions have admitting privileges at hospitals close by, as well as required abortion clinics to meet rigorous, hospital-like standards—placed an "'undue burden' on a woman's right to decide to have an abortion," reads the court ruling in Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt, written by Justice Stephen Breyer. The clinics had argued that these regulations were nothing more than an attempt to close most clinics and limit women's abortion access. Justices John Roberts, Samuel Alito, and Clarence Thomas dissented. (Thousands of Texas women say they've tried to induce their own abortions.)

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