Supreme Court Strikes Down Abortion Restrictions

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

Good news -- the Supreme Court has ruled against the latest attempt to effectively ban abortion.

Rather than try to outright ban abortion, Republican-controlled states have tried to bypass Roe v. Wade and regulate it out of existence by imposing erroneous restrictions on abortion providers.

Chief Justice John Roberts concurred with the court's liberals in an opinion striking down a Louisiana law mandating that abortion providers have admitting privileges at local hospitals.

“The result in this case is controlled by our decision four years ago invalidating a nearly identical Texas law,” Roberts wrote, although he did not join the opinion written by Justice Stephen Breyer for the other liberals.

In dissent, Justice Clarence Thomas wrote, “Today a majority of the Court perpetuates its ill-founded abortion jurisprudence by enjoining a perfectly legitimate state law and doing so without jurisdiction.”

President Donald Trump’s two appointees, Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh, were in dissent, along with Justice Samuel Alito.

It's noteworthy that both of Trump's appointees voted to allow the restrictions and I doubt either of them would stop there. And that is why Trump chose them, isn't it? Striking down legal access to abortion is the ultimate goal of the right wing legal community.

If Trump is reelected and has an opportunity to appoint more one or more justices, they would have voted the same way that Gorsuch and Kavanaugh did and John Roberts' swing vote wouldn't have mattered.

Roberts sided with the liberals in the interest of precedent, not because he necessarily disagrees with the law itself. That means even this opinion is not safe with the current ideological makeup of the court.

The Supreme Court also released an opinion this morning siding with the Trump regime against the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). The agency is suppose to be entirely independent with a director that can only be replaced by the agency itself, not the White House, but the court ruled that the president can replace the director.

The Supreme Court on Monday said the president of the United States has the power to remove the head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. But the high court stopped short of abolishing the agency entirely. The justices ruled 5-4 that the agency's structure is unconstitutional. Conservatives have argued that the agency's structure impinged on the president's constitutional power over the executive branch.

This is one of those decisions that Republicans may eventually regret one day. You know, like maybe even next year when whatever stooge installed by Trump is replaced.

  • muselet

    Don’t get happy.

    The only reason John Roberts voted the way he did is because Louisiana legislators didn’t bother to do much more than replace the word “Texas” with “Louisiana” in their law. If they’d done more and raised some new issue—even one that was transparently nonsensical—Roberts would have voted to uphold the law. He’s simply waiting for the “right” case to strike down Roe v. Wade.

    As for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, it’s even more of a mixed bag. On the one hand, as Kevin Drum says:

    Think about this. The question at hand is whether the president has the inherent right to fire the head of an agency even if Congress restricts that ability. In fact, it’s even more arcane than that: it’s whether the president has the inherent right to fire the head of an agency run by a single person, rather than a multi-person board.

    On the other hand, Steve Benen points to a silver lining:

    But for the proponents of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, there is a possible upside to the ruling: Kathy Kraninger, the Trump-appointed CFPB director, can now be fired if the incumbent president loses.

    Expect the Right to lose its collective mind if Kathy Kraninger is fired by Joe Biden, conveniently forgetting this ruling, and may seek to relitigate the entire issue.

    Don’t get happy.


  • Draxiar

    Just once I want the SCOTUS to come right out and say, “Really? Abortion again? You do realize that it’s legal, yes? Now sit the fuck down and read a law book and stop wasting our time.”

    Which is one of many reasons I should not be allowed to be a Supreme Court Justice *wink*