Late Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a brief two-paragraph statement blocking enforcement of two provisions of a 2013 Texas abortion law until the Court can decide if it will hear the case.
The statement, issued by Justice Antonin Scalia, noted that the decision to issue the temporary stay was a 5-4 vote, with himself, Chief Justice John Roberts, Justice Samuel Alito, and Justice Clarence Thomas voting to deny the stay.
The ruling means that enforcement of facility safety regulations and a requirement that abortionists maintain hospital privileges within 30 miles of their facilities that was supposed to begin on July 1, will be further delayed.
This will allow six of the remaining sixteen Texas abortion facilities to stay open [although they] have failed to comply with the Texas abortion law, known as HB2.*
“We are disappointed in the split decision to keep dangerous abortion facilities open when it is a proven fact that they cannot comply with common-sense safety laws. This places women in unnecessary jeopardy, especially when complications to abortions arise as they do so often,” said Operation Rescue President Troy Newman.
“However, as hard as it is to see babies die unnecessarily while their mothers are exploited due to this stay, we are confident that the Court will ultimately uphold the Texas abortion law.”
A study published in July, 2014, revealed that after portions of HB2 went into effect in 2013, abortions dropped an impressive 13% the following year.
Abortion businesses are now seeking ways to exploit the Supreme Court stay to reopen several abortion clinics that were previously closed.
“We may have gotten more than we even asked for,” Amy Hagstrom Miller told ABC News. Hagstrom Miller, who operates the Whole Woman’s Health abortion chain based in Texas, is exploring ways to reopen her shuttered clinics in Austin and Beaumont, although she admits that action might not be feasible for financial reasons, especially since the Court’s stay is only temporary.
“Abortionists are forever seeking to exploit loopholes or read things into laws and rulings that aren’t there so they can keep their grisly killing operations raking in the money,” said Newman.
“This stay only maintains the current status quo in Texas. It does not roll back anything that has already gone into effect.”
The Supreme Court has now begun its summer recess. No further action is expected until fall at the earliest when the Court is expected to decide whether to hear the case.
If the Court declines to hear it, the stay would be automatically vacated and the clinics that are in non-compliance would be forced to immediately close.
If the Court opts to hear the case, the clinics would be allowed to stay open pending a final ruling from the Court.
*Note: Mainstream media outlets are reporting that there are 19 remaining abortion facilities in Texas, but this number is in error. Operation Rescue’s numbers are accurate and a listing of Texas abortion sites can be viewed at AbortionDocs.org.
[30 June 2015, Washington, DC, http://www.operationrescue.org/archives/split-supreme-court-temporarily-stays-enforcement-of-texas-abortion-law-with-5-4-vote/ ]