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As Abortion Movement Dodders . . . Fifth Circuit Upholds Texas Requirements

April 10, 2014 Frontpage No Comments

By DEXTER DUGGAN

The aging of the pro-abortion revolution was noted in passing in the unanimous ruling by the Fifth Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals that upheld two challenged provisions of the Texas abortion law passed last year.
An owner of the Whole Woman’s Health clinics “testified that 11 of the 14 physicians at her clinics are over the age of 60, and six are over the age of 70,” the opinion by Judge Edith Jones noted.
The misplaced bright hopes of pro-abortionists from the 1970s have declined into decrepitude as their revolution has been exposed as a dismal failure and betrayal of women. Legions of eager new abortionists just aren’t materializing.
The Fifth Circuit’s 3-0 ruling on March 27 upheld Texas requirements that abortion doctors have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles, and that a protocol by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for abortion-inducing drugs be followed. The decision was joined by Judges Jennifer Elrod and Catharina Haynes.
In a statement provided to The Wanderer by the Washington-based Family Research Council, Arina Grossu, director of FRC’s Center for Human Dignity, said other states should take heart and follow Texas’ example.
“The Texas pro-life law will raise the health standards for Texas abortion facilities, and it will encourage other states to do the same in order to protect the health and safety of vulnerable women,” Grossu said.
Earlier in the statement she said: “The commonsense law requires an abortionist to have admitting privileges at an appropriately equipped hospital within 30 miles. Furthermore, it ensures that women taking RU 486, an abortion-causing drug which has harmed thousands of women and killed at least 10, do so according to FDA protocol and with a doctor’s supervision. Laws like this ensure that women have the highest level of medical care available.”
Ashe Schow, an editorial writer for the Washington Examiner, told The Wanderer in an e-mail on April 1: “The fact that all three judges who upheld the law are women shows that the Democrats’ claims that anyone who opposes abortion is anti-woman are demonstrably false.
“The Texas law was aimed not at outlawing abortion but making the procedure safer for women — and yet national and state Democrats, including current [Texas] gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis, opposed the law,” she continued.
“The issue will eventually be decided by the Supreme Court, but not before this year’s election, which means the court’s decision to uphold will benefit Republican [gubernatorial candidate] Greg Abbott.
“The court’s decision is ultimately a setback to abortion advocates, who seem to feel that any attempt to restrict the procedure or ensure it is performed in a safe environment constitutes a ban or a ‘war on women’,” Schow said.
“The fact that hundreds of women a year in Texas require hospitalization following an abortion procedure lends credence to the law’s requirement that abortion doctors have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital. If Democrats want to continue to oppose this law, they do so at the risk of sending the message that they care more about the procedure than the patient,” she said.
In a report she wrote for the Examiner, Schow said, “‘During trial proceedings, Planned Parenthood conceded that at least 210 women in Texas annually must be hospitalized after seeking an abortion,’ the court’s ruling said. ‘Witnesses on both sides further testified that some of the women who are hospitalized after an abortion have complications that require an ob/gyn specialist’s treatment.
“ ‘Against Planned Parenthood’s claims that these women can be adequately treated without the admitting-privileges requirement, the state showed that many hospitals lack an ob/gyn on call for emergencies,’ the ruling continued,” Schow wrote.
The pro-family Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) in a news release praised the court’s decision against “cut-and-run abortionists.”
ADF senior counsel Steven H. Aden said: “Women deserve real doctors, not transient abortionists who have no connection to their patients or their communities. The health and safety of women is more important than an abortionist’s bottom line — including the bottom line of Planned Parenthood, which is the nation’s largest abortion seller. Planned Parenthood’s opposition to these basic health requirements is simply additional evidence that they care more about profit than about what’s best for women.”
In a news release, the pro-life Bioethics Defense Fund (BDF) called attention to Judge Jones’ comment that “Requiring abortion providers to have admitting privileges would also promote the continuity of care in all cases, reducing the risk of injury caused by miscommunication and misdiagnosis when a patient is transferred from one health-care provider to another.”
BDF also highlighted the ruling’s wording upholding the FDA protocol limiting the time for “medication abortions”:
“Since the FDA authorized the protocol for medication abortions in 2000, doctors performing such abortions in Texas, and apparently across the country, have developed an off-label protocol that differs from the FDA-approved version in terms of dosage amounts and administration of the two abortion drugs — mifepristone and misoprostol.
“In particular,” the court said, “although the [label] limits the administration of a medication abortion to 49 days following a woman’s last menstrual period (‘LMP’), doctors regularly administer medication abortions up to 63 days LMP, and sometimes as late as 70 days LMP.”
BDF commented: “The court rejected Planned Parenthood’s facial challenge, ruling that the statute’s restriction to the time period approved by the FDA did not on its face create an undue burden.”
The Family Research Council’s Grossu said Planned Parenthood’s acknowledgment that at least 210 women annually must be hospitalized in Texas after seeking an abortion “shows that this law is necessary. Planned Parenthood is out of touch with the American people because they put ideology ahead of women’s health.”
Texas Republican Gov. Rick Perry, who signed the pro-life bill into law last year, quickly issued a statement praising the Fifth Circuit’s March 27 decision.
“The people of Texas have spoken through their elected leaders and in support of protecting the culture of life in our state. Today’s court decision is good news for Texas women and the unborn, and we will continue to fight for the protection of life and women’s health in Texas,” Perry said.

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