Abortion proponents and opponents each took home a win and a loss on Thursday. Yesterday, PJ Media reported on how the South Carolina Supreme Court Struck down the Fetal Heartbeat Law by a ruling of 3-2. The justices held that the law was a violation of a woman’s right to privacy.
But at the same time, the Idaho Supreme Court was taking a look at the Gem State’s abortion law and, by the same vote as the South Carolina court, upheld it. The law bans all abortions except in cases of rape or incest that have been reported to law enforcement or to prevent the death of the mother. Like other “trigger laws across the nation, the law took effect in the event of a reversal of Roe v. Wade, which happened last year.
According to The Hill, Planned Parenthood filed a lawsuit challenging that law and two others. One was similar to the South Carolina legislation prohibiting an abortion after a fetal heartbeat has been detected and another allows family members of the fetus to sue for damages. The justices ruled 3-2 to dismiss Planned Parenthood’s suit. In the majority opinion, Justice Robyn Brody wrote, “When we apply that test to this dispute, there simply is no support for a conclusion that a right to abortion was ‘deeply rooted’ at the time the Inalienable Rights Clause was adopted.” She added that voters could still address the issue at the ballot box. The Washington Examiner had this quote from the opinion:
“What Petitioners are asking this Court to ultimately do is to declare a right to abortion under the Idaho Constitution when—on its face—there is none. In fact, before Roe announced a federal constitutional right to abortion in 1973, abortion had been a long-standing criminal offense in Idaho.”
Justices Colleen Zahn and John Stegner dissented:
“This Court’s solemn duty is to protect the people and their rights from encroachment by the government,” Stegner wrote in his dissent. “That duty has gone unfulfilled today, and it is the people of Idaho who will suffer for it.”
The CEO of Planned Parenthood Great Northwest, Hawaii, Alaska, Indiana, and Kentucky, Rebecca Gibron, said that the ruling marked a dark day for Idaho. “But our fight is far from over,” she added in a statement. “Planned Parenthood will never back down. We will keep fighting with everything we’ve got to restore Idahoans’ right to control our bodies and our lives.
As Brody noted, the people of Idaho can still vote their consciences when it comes to abortion, but the law in question faces another challenge, namely from the Department of Justice, which has shown itself to be decidedly pro-abortion of late. In August, the DOJ filed a suit over the laws, on the grounds that Idaho’s ban is a violation of the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act.