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Planned Parenthood Requests Supreme Court Rule Abortion “Essential” Service

Planned Parenthood will stop at nothing to protect the “sacred” right of abortion.

Due to the COVID crisis, Texas placed a ban on most abortions, save for those deemed necessary to preserve the life of the mother. Doctors that ignore the ban face steep penalties.

Planned Parenthood, the largest abortion provider in the country, couldn’t stomach the temporary ban. The organization took the state to court and in a recent ruling, the federal appeals court ruled the ban could remain in place.

Now, Planned Parenthood demands the United States Supreme Court take up the case and issue and immediate hold on the ban.

CBS reports the details:

Texas’ near-total abortion ban amid the coronavirus pandemic may soon be in front of the United States Supreme Court.

On Saturday afternoon, the coalition of abortion rights groups challenging the state’s suspension of abortion services filed for an emergency stay, requesting that the Supreme Court block a federal appeals court’s decision to uphold most of the ban. For nearly three weeks, the vast majority of abortion services have been unavailable in Texas, the first time a state has been without legal abortion access since 1973, when the procedure was legalized by Roe v. Wade.

The groups — Planned Parenthood, the Center for Reproductive Rights and the Lawyering Project — are requesting that the nation’s highest court reinstate a temporary restraining order granted on Thursday that allows medication abortion to resume, as well as surgical procedures for patients who would be outside the legal gestational limit by the time the ban is set to expire. On Friday, a federal appeals court reversed part of that decision, demanding that medication abortions once again be halted.

In the 374-page filing, lawyers representing Texas’ abortion providers said the Supreme Court’s intervention was “urgently needed.”

“Delaying abortions by weeks does nothing to further the State’s interest in combatting COVID-19, and indeed runs directly contrary to that interest: individuals will require more health care — even in the short term — if they remain pregnant than if they have a desired abortion, and some will engage in risky, out-of-state travel in an attempt to access earlier abortion services, thus increasing contagion risks in the midst of a pandemic,” attorneys wrote in the filing.

Twitter went into a frenzy over Planned Parenthood’s call to involve the high court:

What's interesting to note is that many liberals are outraged that church services may continue in many states. Apparently faith and religion should be deemed "non-essential" while abortion remains "essential."

NPR provides the following on the ban:

A federal three-judge appeals panel says a ban on abortions in Texas can remain in effect during the coronavirus pandemic.

The state's Republican governor and attorney general have said abortion should be treated as an elective procedure and suspended in an effort to preserve medical supplies for health care providers. Clinics in Texas have shut their doors, and patients seeking abortions have been turned away in recent days.

The ruling comes days after the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit issued a temporary order allowing the ban to stay in effect while litigation continues.

Reproductive rights groups have challenged abortion bans in several states, including Texas, that have been issued in response to the pandemic.

In a 2-1 decision, the panel of the New Orleans-based federal court said the Texas ban can remain in effect during the pandemic given "the escalating spread of COVID-19, and the state's critical interest in protecting the public health."

Medical groups, meanwhile, have accused Republican state leaders of politicizing the crisis, and have said abortion is an essential, time-sensitive procedure. Reproductive rights groups have vowed to continue fighting the ban, and the matter could end up before the U.S. Supreme Court.


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