With all that’s going on in the world of law, I didn’t plan on writing about abortion again so soon. But as the tide of Supreme Court-bound abortion cases turns rapidly into a flood, it’s become a challenge even for people with a deep interest in the future of the abortion right to keep track of what’s happening and of which cases to worry about most. Thus, this column.
Within the next few weeks, a challenge to Louisiana’s abortion law, which I wrote about last month, will arrive at the court as a formal appeal. Louisiana requires that doctors who perform abortions in that deeply anti-abortion state do the impossible by getting admitting privileges in local hospitals. The law is “substantially similar” to the Texas law the Supreme Court declared unconstitutional in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt in 2016, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit conceded, in an opinion that implausibly upheld the Louisiana law nonetheless. (The Supreme Court last month, over four dissents, temporarily blocked the law from taking effect in order to give the abortion providers a chance to file their appeal.)