The Supreme Court divided down partisan lines today when it ruled that Texas can continue to enforce strict abortion restrictions that prevent nearly a third of the state’s clinics from operating.
The court rejected the arguments by Planned Parenthood and several affiliated clinics that claimed that the strictures place an “undue burden” on women’s ability to procure an abortion.
“In just the few short days since the injunction was lifted,” lawyers for these groups wrote to the court, “over one-third of the facilities providing abortions in Texas have been forced to stop providing that care and others have been forced to drastically reduce the number of patients to whom they are able to provide care. Already, appointments are being canceled and women seeking abortions are being turned away.”
Justice Scalia, writing in support of the order, agreed with lower court judges who claimed that the restrictions do not outlaw the procedure, they merely make women drive a greater distance to obtain one.
In a statement, Texas Governor Rick Perry praised the decision. “This is good news both for the unborn and for the women of Texas, who are now better protected from shoddy abortion providers operating in dangerous conditions,” he said. “As always, Texas will continue doing everything we can to protect the culture of life in our state.”