“Winning this case is very important because of its potential to negatively impact Tennessee law.” Rep. Susan Lynn
WASHINGTON, D.C. (02-03-16) – State Representative Susan Lynn joined a coalition of more than 460 Republican and Democratic office holders represented by Americans United for Life and the Bioethics Defense Fund in an amicus curie (friend of the court) brief filed today in the most significant abortion case before the Supreme Court in decades, Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, formally known as Whole Woman’s Health v. Cole. In the brief and on behalf of the officeholders, AUL demonstrates to the Court that state efforts to protect women through reasonable health and safety standards must be upheld for reasons of common sense and medical reality.
“It is very important for us to submit this amicus brief because the laws we passed in Tennessee as a result of Amendment 1 could be overturned should the plaintiffs win this case.” said Rep. Lynn. AUL President and CEO Dr. Charmaine Yoest commended Lynn as “a champion for both women and their unborn children” and observed, “At every turn, the abortion industry fights health and safety standards that offer real protection to women, going to court to keep profits high and standards low and ignoring the severe medical risks to women exposed to the reality of abortion in America. AUL’s legal team is proud to stand with men and women from across the country – more than 460 Republicans and Democrats – who are working to protect life in law in their states.”
“This historical case provides an important opportunity for the Supreme Court to affirm its support of laws that protect women’s health,” Dr. Yoest noted. “After more than four decades of the abortion industry’s recalcitrant opposition to meaningful oversight, the Supreme Court must unequivocally affirm that it meant what it has said as far back as Roe: states may regulate abortion to protect a mother’s health.”
The case, Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellersted, involves Texas House Bill 2, a measure enacted in 2013 with a number of life-affirming provisions. Placing profit above women’s health, abortion providers challenged provisions requiring them to meet the same health and safety standards as ambulatory surgical centers (ASCs), as well as to have admitting privileges at a local hospital. In June 2015, the Fifth Circuit upheld the provisions, and abortion providers appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court in their continued effort to avoid compliance with the commonsense requirements.
AUL has been active in this case since its inception. In addition to providing expert consultation on the constitutionality of HB 2 before and after it was enacted, AUL filed an amicus brief in the Fifth Circuit on behalf of Texas Legislators.
AUL’s current brief was filed on behalf of Rep. Susan Lynn and more than 460 other public officeholders from states with provisions similar to the Texas health and safety standards. The brief demonstrates that the Supreme Court has promised “wide discretion” to state lawmakers in the regulation of abortion and gives significant deference to legislative determinations as to the medical necessity for enacting health and safety regulations. Here, both the legislative record and the evidence before the trial court confirm that the State of Texas acted in the best interest of women, and the Supreme Court must uphold HB 2.
For more on the health risks of abortion for women, click here: