Supreme Court Refuses To Throw Out New Hampshire’s Parental Notification Law

To: National Desk
Contact: Joe Scheidler of the Pro-Life Action League, 773-777-2900

Chicago, Jan 18—”The Supreme Court may be signaling a shift in its approach to abortion,” said Joseph M. Scheidler, National Director of the Chicago-based Pro-Life Action League, in response to the Court’s ruling in Ayotte v. Planned Parenthood of Northern New England.

Sandra Day O’Connor, writing for the unanimous Court, stated that the lower courts erred in permanently enjoining the New Hampshire Parental Notification Prior to Abortion Act. The Supreme Court held that the Act need not be declared unconstitutional simply because a small part of it may pose constitutional problems. In a 9-0 vote, the Court directed the First Circuit Court of Appeals to take a look at what the New Hampshire legislature intended in the law and address specific concerns, rather than reject the entire Act.

“It is interesting that O’Connor penned the Opinion in this case,” said Scheidler. “In 1982 she stated that ‘Roe is on a collision course with itself.’ Yet she found a way around the ‘collision course’ in the Casey ruling, warning that laws restricting abortion might place an ‘undue burden’ on a woman. Maybe O’Connor is re-thinking what constitutes an ‘undue burden.'”

“I think the Ayotte ruling anticipates the ultimate over-turning of Roe and the need for states to be prepared to be either pro-abortion or pro-life states,” Scheidler said. “It may be that this ruling is preparing states to gear up for the battles over the right to life to be fought in each state.”

“This is clearly a victory for the pro-life movement,” said Scheidler.

The Pro-Life Action League is the nation’s largest activist pro-life organization. For further information please see www.prolifeaction.org.

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