Constitutional Law

Supreme Court blocks enforcement of Louisiana abortion clinic restrictions


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Last month, a federal appeals court in New Orleans refused to block a Louisiana law that could close three of the state’s four abortion clinics, staying an injunction issued by a trial court.

But on Friday, the U.S. Supreme Court effectively reversed that 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling by vacating the stay, according to the Associated Press.

The Supreme Court did not issue any opinion in connection with today’s two-sentence order (PDF), a Courthouse News article reports.

The New York Times (reg. req) and the Wall Street Journal (sub. req.) also have stories.

The Louisiana law at issue requires doctors who perform abortions to be authorized by nearby hospitals to admit patients there.

In response to the Supreme Court ruling, two clinics that had already closed after the 5th Circuit decision will reopen, according to the Center for Reproductive Rights, which represents the clinics.

Farther along in the appellate process is a similar Texas abortion law that also passed muster with the 5th Circuit.

The Supreme Court last year blocked another 5th Circuit decision (PDF) that largely allowed enforcement of the Texas abortion law.

Earlier this week, the nation’s top court heard arguments in the Texas case, appearing to be evenly divided following the death of Justice Antonin Scalia.

Hat tip: How Appealing.

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