US Supreme Court Takes No Action in Indiana Abortion Cases

Supreme Court
Brendan McDermid/Reuters

Last updated 5/20/2019 at 10: 26 a.m. ET.

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday took no action on appeals seeking to revive two restrictive Republican-backed abortion laws from Indiana, even as debate rages over a new measure in Alabama that would prohibit the procedure almost entirely.

Neither Indiana case was on the list of appeals on which the court acted on Monday morning. The court could next announce whether or not it will hear the cases on May 28.

If the nine-justice court takes up either case, it would give the conservative majority an opportunity to chip away at the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling that legalized abortion nationwide and recognized a right under the U.S. Constitution for women to terminate pregnancies.

One of the Indiana laws requires fetal remains to be buried or cremated and bans abortions performed because of fetal disability or the sex or race of the fetus. The other law requires women to undergo an ultrasound examination at least 18 hours before they undergo an abortion.

Both Indiana measures were signed into law in 2016 by Vice President Mike Pence when he was Indiana’s governor and were struck down by federal judges the following year. The state of Indiana is appealing to the Supreme Court.

The Alabama law was signed by Republican Governor Kay Ivey last week but is not set to go into effect for six months. It would outlaw almost all abortions, including in cases of pregnancies resulting from rape or incest. Exceptions would be allowed only to protect the mother’s health. Doctors who perform abortions could face up to 99 years in prison.

The Alabama law was written with the assumption that it would face legal challenges and could ultimately end up at the high court.

Conservative activists have long denounced the Roe v. Wade decision and hope that the conservative Supreme Court justices, who hold a 5-4 majority, will undermine or even overturn it.

Their chances of success were given a boost last year by the retirement of Justice Anthony Kennedy, who had backed abortion rights in two key cases. Kennedy was replaced by President Donald Trump’s conservative appointee Brett Kavanaugh, who has a thin record on abortion.

Legislation to restrict abortion rights has been introduced this year in 16 states. Four governors have signed bills banning abortion if an embryonic heartbeat can be detected.

Kavanaugh and Chief Justice John Roberts, who has voted against abortion rights in previous cases, are seen by legal experts as the key votes to watch.

The high court has two other abortion cases on its docket that it will also act on in the coming months – attempts by Alabama and Louisiana to revive other previously blocked abortion restrictions.

(Reporting by Lawrence Hurley; Editing by Kevin Drawbaugh, Bill Berkrot and Will Dunham)

What do you think?

12 pledges
Upvote Downvote
newest oldest most voted
Notify of
Brad Hobbs
Member

I remember the left saying that abortion should be safe and rare. These laws will facilitate that objective.

We have killed far too many babies… far from “rare” we have exterminated enough wage earners to have solved numerous economic and tax problems. How could any nation be so foolish as to kill it’s own future?

Kathie Norfleet
Guest
Kathie Norfleet

Now women will turn to other women and they will still have an abortion,. If the women doesn’t know how to do it ,the woman will suffer horribly or they will send the pregnant woman to someone who will then be a “back alley” abortionist. Arrests, deformities, and deaths will occur and rise.

wwhite944
Guest
wwhite944

Yes, let’s worry about them before they are born. After they are born, to hell with them.

Phoenix
Member

Abortion rates would be significantly lower with better sex education and better access to affordable birth control – the left 20 years ago probably didn’t anticipate that there would be such push back on that as well.

TOM
Member

Maybe there is too much sex education. Maybe what is needed is a little more religious education. There is already a very affordable birth control, it is called abstinence. There is also another affordable birth control if you insist on using a pill, an aspirin tablet . . . held between the knees.

General Confusion
Member

TOM is obviously confused by how people work. What a foolish man you are.

General Confusion
Member

Double post

Tery Gohsman
Member

People don’t need to be taught to hate. It comes naturally to too many people already. You obviously haven’t noticed that the recent abortion laws also ban effective birth control. So basically the republicans are encouraging gay sex at the same time as they try to outlaw it.

Phoenix
Member

Abstinence only education does not stop sex – it just ensures its going to be done unsafely. Learning about sex also does not mean you will have sex – you either will or you won’t regardless. I took two chemistry courses in HS – not once did i ever dabble in chemistry outside of class. Additionally, you are talking about teenagers having sex and I’m talking about preventing pregnancy even as adults. Married couples have plenty of sex and they don’t always want that to result in a kiddo. Are wives who have sex with their husbands whores? And parents,… Read more »

Ed
Member

I don’t disagree with you entirely. When statistically 1 in 4 women will have an abortion, it’s gone from being rare into just being something convenient. We have literally decimated our potential population since the ‘70s, and then some.

It’s hard to jump on the loss of potential wage earners bandwagon, when there is such a push to exclude the millions of people who want to earn a wage. If simply having more bodies was the solution to economic and tax problems, we wouldn’t be demanding a wall.

Adam
Guest
Adam

Sadly the Pro Life lobby also oppose contraception and a robust sex education approach in schools.

TOM
Member

I am going to disagree with you and Ed on the wage earner part. Every child born requires resources. So while they can be viewed as wage earners they are also consumers of food resources, land for housing, electricity, etc. And they become contributors to that giant bugaboo of the progressive left, global warming.

Ed
Member

I don’t disagree with that entirely, either. As long as there are the resources (which we certainly have enough of in the US) a larger labor pool and consumer market would make the economy grow. What I was pointing out is that this “lack” of resources are what a large number of people use to justify their anti-immigrant stance; that we already have more people than we can support. If we could be more prosperous by just adding more people, we could do it rather quickly. It’s pretty sad that so many in our society are more compassionate towards unwanted… Read more »

US, China Bicker Over ‘Extravagant Expectations’ on Trade Deal

Trump Threatens Iran in Tweet as Tension Between Two Countries Escalate