BREAKING: The Supreme Court Will Hear Louisiana’s Admitting-Privileges Law

Proving once again that Fridays are usually the best news days, the U.S. Supreme Court announced it’s adding the case of June Medical Services v. Gee to its fall docket, which will make for a massive abortion fight next year. From a press release out of Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry’s office…

Today, the Supreme Court of the United States announced that it will take up Louisiana’s admitting privilege law, which is designed to protect women. As the main defender of Louisiana’s pro-life and pro-woman laws – Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry issued the following statement:

“In 2014, our duly elected legislators overwhelmingly passed Act 620 to require doctors who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals. Today, the United States Supreme Court has agreed to consider our case; and we remain hopeful the Justices will affirm the Fifth Circuit’s decision, as we firmly believe that the facts in our case show Act 620 is constitutional and consistent with our overall regulatory scheme for surgical procedures.

In addition to agreeing to consider the merits of Louisiana’s admitting privileges law, we are pleased the Court has also agreed to take up Louisiana’s challenge to the third-party standing of abortion providers to bring these types of challenges in the first place. The evidence of Louisiana abortion clinics’ poor safety records, inadequate credentialing practices, and questionable efforts to undermine health and safety regulations shows that the abortion clinics’ interests are directly adverse to the interests of Louisiana women. Incompetent and unsafe providers should not be allowed to challenge health and safety standards designed to protect women from those very providers.

Going forward, my office and I will be carefully reviewing the next steps in our defense of Louisiana’s admitting privileges law. We will not waver in defense of our State’s pro-woman and pro-life laws; and we will continue to do all we legally can to protect Louisiana women.”

The Supreme Court struck down a similar law in Texas back in 2016 on a 5-3 vote, but the Louisiana law is a bit different in terms of its impact. As Texas has a lot looser regulatory scheme with respect to occupational licensing overall and also with respect to the medical field, requiring admitting privileges in local hospitals as a condition to allowing someone to practice as an abortionist stands out as unduly restrictive in the Lone Star State far more than it does here – where you have to have an occupational license to do everything from petroleum engineering to hair braiding and practicing as a florist. The Texas statute also went beyond admitting privileges and contained a bunch of other unfriendly restrictions that Louisiana’s law doesn’t have.

The fact that Louisiana abortuaries like Delta Women’s Clinic in Baton Rouge routinely injure patients and employ unlicensed doctors provides a basis for such a law in Louisiana probably makes for a different scenario as well.

The pro-abort crowd doesn’t really seem to be bothered by those incidences, but they sure are bothered by the idea this law would get upheld by the Supreme Court next spring.

“Louisiana is openly defying the Court’s 2016 ruling that states can’t use sham medical regulations to shut down clinics,” said Michelle Erenberg, executive director of Lift Louisiana, a women’s health advocacy group that supports abortion rights. “We are hopeful that the Court will uphold the rule of law, protect our constitutional rights, and be independent of partisan politics. The people of Louisiana shouldn’t be denied their rights because of where they live.”

Erenberg didn’t explain how requiring an actual doctor in good standing to be the one who performs an abortion in Louisiana impinges on anyone’s rights. We wouldn’t really expect her to, because she’s a lot more interested in killing babies than protecting mothers.

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