Opinion | The problem with relying on precedent to protect abortion rights

Precedent goes only so far.

6/30/2020 1:02:00 PM

Opinion: The problem with relying on precedent to protect abortion rights

Precedent goes only so far.

June Medical Services v. Russo.This time, the court’s liberal wing teamed up with Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. to strike down a Louisiana law that required abortion providers to have admitting privileges at local hospitals. To be sure, Roberts is no supporter of abortion rights —

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inWhole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, the court’s 2016 decision invalidating a Texas admitting privileges law. But in the role of chief justice, he is perhaps the most stalwart defender of the court’s legitimacy, and in Monday’s decision, heemphasized the importance

of “adherence to precedent” for maintaining the “actual and perceived integrity of the judicial process.” With these words, abortion rights live to fight another day.If all of this feels familiar, it should. Similar dynamics were at play 28 years ago when the court decided

. Then, as now, the question of precedent loomed large as abortion rights groups braced for the court, with its new complement of Reagan and George H.W. Bush appointees, to scuttleRoe. Instead, the court, in an apparent nod to precedent, affirmedRoe’s “essential holding” that there was a constitutional right to choose an abortion.

Butwas far from an unadulterated endorsement of Read more: The Washington Post »

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