Supreme Court Rejects Alabama’s Request to Renew Ban on Abortion Procedure

Supreme Court Rejects Alabama’s Request to Renew Ban on Abortion Procedure

On Friday, the U.S. Supreme Court let stand a lower court ruling that invalidated a 2016 Alabama law that bans dismemberment abortions in the second trimester.

In 2016, Alabama lawmakers enacted the Unborn Child Protection from Dismemberment Act. But soonafter, the West Alabama Women’s Center and the American Civil Liberties Union of Alabama sued to overturn the law. They succeeded when later that year, U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson ruled to repeal the law. And in 2018, the 11thU.S. Court of Appeals affirmed Thompson’s ruling to block the Act, but suggested it may have upheld the law if it was not bound by the precedent set by Roe v. Wade.

According to the Montgomery Advertiser, in 2014, 594 abortions occurred in Alabama during the second trimester of pregnancy or later. Most were performed through the procedure known as dilation and evacuation, in which forceps, clamps, scissors or similar instruments are used to remove the baby from the womb in pieces.

Conservative Justice Clarence Thomas wrote an opinion agreeing with the Supreme Court’s decision on Friday not to hear the issue, but he made it clear that he would vote to uphold such laws if given the chance.

“The notion that anything in the Constitution prevents states from passing laws prohibiting the dismembering of a living child is implausible,” he wrote.

Thomas also warned that the high court cannot tiptoe around abortion issues for much longer.

“Unborn children and mothers will continue to be victimized by the abortion industry while the Court does nothing,” said the Susan B. Anthony List in a statement. “Justice Thomas is absolutely right when he says: ‘This case serves as a stark reminder that our abortion jurisprudence has spiraled out of control … we cannot continue blinking at the reality of what this Court has wrought.’”

“Alabama children should be protected by law from being torn limb from limb,” said Bill Klein, president of Alabama Citizens for Life. “No human should die this way in a civilized society. It shows a total disrespect for the sanctity of human life.”

Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall also disagreed with the court’s refusal to hear the case: “I am disappointed that the United States Supreme Court has decided not to hear Alabama’s appeal of a lower-court decision that invalidated our state law, enacted in 2016, prohibiting dismemberment abortion—a method of killing an unborn child that cannot be described in even the most clinical of terms to hide its monstrosity and gruesomeness.”

“I believe that the day of reckoning for Roe is coming,” he added.


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