Critics rip into Susan Collins after abortion ruling by Justice Kavanaugh


The Supreme Court is stopping Louisiana from enforcing new regulations on abortion clinics in a test of the conservative court's views on abortion rights.

In September, a panel of the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled 2-1 in favor of Act 620, the state's law requiring abortion centers to make arrangements for admitting women to hospitals within 30 miles in cases of life-threatening complications, and ordered a lawsuit against the law dismissed, reversing a previous ruling by a federal judge in Baton Rouge.

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DeGravelles further found that were the Louisiana law allowed to go into effect, only one clinic and one doctor in the state would be qualified to perform abortions.

At the lone abortion clinic operating in New Orleans, nurse Vanessa Shields-Haas, who helps escort patients into the facility, said she was pleasantly surprised at the 5-4 vote to block the state law's implementation. Which means he will nearly certainly vote to uphold the Louisiana law once the court hears it in full. But dissent signals Kavanaugh's openness to state restrictions on abortion rights with limitations and without overturning Roe v. Wade outright.

The four more conservative justices, including President Donald Trump's two recent appointments to the bench, would have let the law go into effect.

In a press release, Demand Justice said it is also running "static Facebook ads reminding Mainers of Collins' vote for Kavanaugh". If they could, then the law would not impose an undue burden on under Whole Women's Health v. Hellerstedt.

Kavanaugh said the doctors would continue to be allowed to perform abortions during the 45-day period and would be given leeway by regulators to comply with the law.

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In that decision, Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt, a five-member majority said the law "provides few, if any, health benefits for women, poses a substantial obstacle to women seeking abortions, and constitutes an "undue burden" on their constitutional right to do so".

"Louisiana legislators on both sides of the aisle enacted this law to protect women from the abortion lobby which repeatedly puts profit over health and safety standards, and has proven incapable of policing itself", she said in a statement.

Two days before the high court's action, David French - senior writer for National Review and former senior counsel for Alliance Defending Freedom - said a stay of the Fifth Circuit opinion by the justices would be "quite frankly ominous news for the pro-life movement".

Clark said if her critics weren't griping about Kavanaugh, they would be targeting Collins for something else. The law has been blocked since litigation began, so issuing the stay effectively changes nothing in terms of the immediate legal landscape.

Judge Patrick Higginbotham, a Reagan appointee like Smith, dissented, accusing his colleague of failing to "meaningfully apply" the Supreme Court's prior rulings on abortion.

At the same time, the threat to women's reproductive rights has pushed some liberal states to expand rights to abortion.

The law had been scheduled to take effect Monday, but Justice Samuel Alito delayed the effective date at least through Thursday to give the justices more time.

"We remain hopeful that if the Supreme Court grants certiorari in this case, it will be to re-affirm that courts rule in fact-specific cases; because the facts in our case show (the bill) is constitutional and consistent with our overall regulatory scheme for surgical procedures".