Federal Judge: HB 2 Places "Undue Burden" on Texas Women

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U.S. District Judge Lee Yeakel never intended to wade into the abortion wars. He made that much clear in the preamble to his ruling, handed down today, in Planned Parenthood's lawsuit over Texas' new abortion restrictions:

Today there is no issue that divides the people of this country more than abortion. It is the most divisive issue to face this country since slavery. When compared with the intensity, emotion, and depth of feeling expressed with regard to abortion, the recent arguments on affordable healthcare, increasing the debt ceiling, and closing the government retreat to near oblivion. Sincere and caring persons of good will are found on both sides of the issue, but neither side will ever change the position of the other. Legislatures and courts will continue to be confounded by the issue for the foreseeable future. No ruling of this court will sway the opinion regarding abortion held by anyone. And, indeed, that is not the role of this court. The court may not and will not decide whether there should be abortions in Texas. This court is charged only with determining whether certain provisions of House Bill 2 are consistent with the Constitution of the United States under existing Supreme Court precedent.

Yet Yeakel is a man of duty, and, as such, he has considered applicable law and made his decision. The provision of HB 2 requiring doctors performing abortions to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles is "without a rational basis and places a substantial obstacle in the path of women seeking an abortion." The requirement that a physician administer abortion-inducing drugs using outdated FDA guidelines, which Planned Parenthood also challenged, places no such burden except when surgical abortion is likely to put the mother's health at risk.

Cue an appeal from both sides. In the meantime, here's the full opinion:

Order on HB2 Case.pdf

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12 comments
roo_ster
roo_ster

How sad that the War on Women continues.  This judge is essentially saying that women are undeserving of a benevolent government's protection and regard for their health.  

Any doc I have used at an ambulatory surgery center has had admitting privileges at a nearby hospital, sometimes more than one.  And those were for mere endoscopies, where the doc is merely taking a gander at my gizzard & such, let a lone a surgery that may have life-threatening complications.

I think women deserve treatment by docs who, at minimum, treat surgical patients at locations that meet ASC requirements and that those docs are not mere quacks who can not wrangle admitting privileges at reputable hospitals.  

"Paging Dr. Gosnell, paging Dr. Kermit Gosnell.... "


CitzenKim
CitzenKim

Thank God for the Federal government that protects us from the barbarians surrounding our cities.

jesdynf
jesdynf

Remember, if these people wanted to live in a world with fewer abortions, they could work to expand to widen the safety net and buff up the foster system and women might take advantages of the options available to them.

In contrast, /this/ crap will not be permitted, and since it was not permitted they have reduced the number of abortions that happened by... zero.

Just-Sharon
Just-Sharon

Isn't it silly how much brouhaha we must go through just to reach a rational and sane point.

Now wait for that extreme closet case from the First Baptist Tax Exempt POS that calls himself a preacher comes up with some offensive verbiage.  A man who can't figure out where the Balls are on his wife's vay jay jay.

P1Gunter
P1Gunter

That looks like a shockingly progressive opinion for Texas.

leftocenter
leftocenter

@roo_ster Without getting into the moral argument...

Can you cite evidence re numbers of women (if any) in Texas in the last, say, decade, who have had life-threatening complications from an abortion?  No, not an anecdote...evidence. 


It always surprises me that the pro-life side continues to pass legislation that has no chance of surviving challenge.  Why not do everything possible to reduce the number of abortions right now today.  Stop trying to force the Supremes to re-visit Roe v Wade -- you won't like the outcome. 

No one is pro-abortion. 

P1Gunter
P1Gunter

It's always been the funny dichotomy of the pro-lifers.

Pro-choice: So you're going to adopt these kids?

Pro-life: Well no, but someone will.

PC: But surely you want to expand WIC and CHIP then so these kids have a fighting chance, right?

PL: Well no, I don't want to pay more taxes and charities will cover it.

PC: Well at the very least we can teach our children safe sex since we all know they're going to do it anyway to cut down on abortions.

PL: Well no, we have a moral objection to that.

ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul
ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul topcommenter

@P1Gunter  

Judge Yeakel was appointed by President Bush in 2003.  Judge Yeakel also received his JD from University of Texas (Austin).

dingo
dingo

@curmudgeon @P1GunterSincere and caring women of good will are waging war on women in Texas according to the judge.

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