On June 27, the United States Supreme Court issued a 5-3 decision striking down portions of Texas’ anti-abortion law, HB 2, which forced abortion clinics to close if they didn’t meet the same standards as surgical clinics. In the majority opinion, Justice Steven Breyer noted that portions of the law violated the “undue burden” test set forth by the Court in the 1992 case, Planned Parenthood v. Casey. So what’s next for the Texas abortion clinics affected by this ruling?
Needless to say, challengers of the law are elated with the Court’s decision. “We told the stories of those most affected,” said Amy Hagstrom Miller, founder and CEO of Whole Woman’s Health and lead plaintiff in HB 2, said in an email to WomensHealthMag.com. “We illustrated what undue burden is and we opened our doors, our books, our records with honesty and truth to the scrutiny of the state. And we won.” The law’s supporters claimed these regulations were necessary for the protection of “women’s health,” but the Court disagreed: Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote in her concurring opinion, “Given those realities, it is beyond rational belief that HB 2 could genuinely protect the health of women,” and it’s certain that the law “would simply make it more difficult for them to obtain abortions.”