U.S. Supreme Court

SCOTUS partly stays Texas abortion law that closed all but eight abortion clinics in the state

  • Print.

The U.S. Supreme Court has partly stayed a Texas abortion law that had closed all but eight of the state’s abortion clinics.

As a result of the Supreme Court order (PDF) on Tuesday, 13 abortion clinics can reopen, report SCOTUSblog, the New York Times, the National Law Journal and the Washington Post. At one time the state had 41 abortion clinics.

Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas and Samuel A. Alito Jr. would not have granted the stay.

The eight abortion clinics that remained open were in metropolitan regions in the eastern part of the state, the New York Times says. No abortion clinics remained open west or south of San Antonio.

One of the law’s requirements said abortion-clinic doctors in Texas must have admission privileges at a hospital within 30 miles of their clinic. The U.S. Supreme Court stayed enforcement of that provision against clinics in El Paso and McAllen, the southwestern part of the state.

A second requirement said abortion clinics must upgrade their facilities to be equipped as hospital-style ambulatory surgical centers, even when they only use drugs to perform abortions. The Supreme Court stayed that provision throughout the state.

The stay will remain in effect while the New Orleans-based 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rules on a constitutional challenge to the law.

The case is Whole Woman’s Health v. Lakey.

Give us feedback, share a story tip or update, or report an error.