(INDIANAPOLIS) – Attorney General Curtis Hill Monday issued the following statement:
“By a 5-4 vote, the U.S. Supreme Court today invalidated a Louisiana requirement that abortion doctors have hospital admitting privileges. Indiana, together with Arkansas, previously submitted an amicus brief joined by 18 other states urging the court both to reject the authority of abortion clinics to bring this type of lawsuit and to uphold the Louisiana admitting privileges law.
“Justice Samuel Alito cited Indiana’s brief in his dissenting opinion, in which he proclaimed, ‘The divided majority cannot agree on what the abortion right requires, but it nevertheless strikes down a Louisiana law . . . that the legislature enacted for the asserted purpose of protecting women’s health.’ ”
“Justice Clarence Thomas correctly assessed today’s ruling in his own dissenting opinion. ‘Today,’ he said, ‘a majority of the Court perpetuates its ill-founded abortion jurisprudence by enjoining a perfectly legitimate state law and doing so without jurisdiction.’ The court relied upon precedents, he said, that ‘created the right to abortion out of whole cloth, without a shred of support from the Constitution’s text.’
“Rather than siding today with the Supreme Court’s four liberal justices, Chief Justice John Roberts could have helped steer the court toward a truer constitutional course. In his own dissenting opinion, Justice Neil Gorsuch aptly observed that, with the opinions of the Chief Justice and the four liberal justices, ‘To arrive at today’s result, rules must be brushed aside and shortcuts taken.’ He grieved that today’s decision ‘is a sign we have lost our way.’
“Even as we lament this missed opportunity, however, we take heart that Chief Justice Roberts ruled as he did only because he felt bound by the Supreme Court’s 2016 decision in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt. We have long contended that the Supreme Court decided that case incorrectly, and today a majority of the court, including the Chief Justice himself, agreed with our position, even as the court inexplicably continued to apply its outcome.
“Consequently, we do not read today’s decision to interfere with our continued fight both to defend the unborn and to safeguard the health and safety of women seeking abortion.
“Just last year, we discovered that former abortion doctor Ulrich Klopfer stored aborted fetuses in his garage and automobiles and generally operated unsafe abortion clinics. The tragedies caused by Klopfer’s unscrupulous practices are a sober reminder that the state plays an important role in regulating abortion doctors and clinics to ensure the safety of women and the dignity of human life.
“We remain steadfast in our defense of Indiana’s abortion regulations.”
Today’s Supreme Court decision is attached.