Supreme Court Decision Marks Setback for Women’s Health and Privacy

Washington, DC — Nancy Keenan, president of NARAL Pro- Choice America, issued the following statement in response to today’s Supreme Court decision in the Federal Abortion Ban cases.

“Today’s decision shows Bush’s appointees have moved the Court in a direction that could further undermine Roe v. Wade and protections for women’s health. The door is now open for politicians like George W. Bush to interfere even more in our personal, private medical decisions. The Court has given anti-choice state lawmakers the green light to open the flood gates and launch additional attacks on safe, legal abortion, without any regard for women’s health.


“The bottom line is clear: elections matter. An anti- choice Congress and an anti-choice president pushed this ban all the way to the Supreme Court. In fact, the same politicians behind this abortion ban also block stem-cell research and interfered in the Terri Schiavo case. We need to elect more pro-choice members of Congress and a president who will stand up for-not attack-our fundamental values of freedom and privacy.


“The Court has disregarded the medical opinion of leading doctors who oppose the ban. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists-which represents 90 percent of the OB GYNs in this country – says the ban is harmful to women’s health and interferes with medical decision making.


“This case is about more than abortion. This decision means the Court is willing to partner with the Bush administration and uphold laws that interfere with personal decisions that should be left up to a woman and her family.


“Indeed, this is a setback for all Americans who believe politicians should not make private, personal medical decisions for the rest of us. Many pro-choice lawmakers, including presidential candidates, opposed the Bush Federal Abortion Ban. These leaders are right to remind the public that President Bush’s appointees to the Court are taking women’s reproductive rights in a dangerous direction.”




The Supreme Court struck down an almost identical state law as unconstitutional in 2000, and every court to hear a challenge to this first-ever federal ban on abortion declared it unconstitutional. Since the Court’s decision in 2000, President Bush appointed Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court and abortion foes see these appointments as an opportunity to undermine the Roe v. Wade decision. NARAL Pro-Choice America and its affiliate network lobbied strongly against the law and submitted an amicus brief to the Court arguing that the only appropriate remedy for the ban’s constitutional flaws was to bar its enforcement entirely.


Contact: Ted Miller, 202.973.3032



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