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Mon Dec 9, 2019, 05:11 PM

Which of the four liberals declined to hear a challenge to Kentucky's anti-abortion law?

As most of you know, a little while ago the Supreme Court let stand the Kentucky law requiring doctors to perform ultrasounds and show fetal images to patients, by declining to hear a challenge. Since it takes four votes to hear it, at least one liberal didn't want to take it up.

Which one (or ones) do you think didn't want to take up the case? What was their reasoning? The only thing that I can think of is that they feared that the Court would strike down Row if they took up this case. That's not a really good reason though, because we can't let these crazy laws stand without getting challenged.

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Reply Which of the four liberals declined to hear a challenge to Kentucky's anti-abortion law? (Original post)
Polybius Dec 2019 OP
SterlingPound Dec 2019 #1
backscatter712 Dec 2019 #2
tritsofme Dec 2019 #3
onenote Dec 2019 #4
tritsofme Dec 2019 #5
onenote Dec 2019 #6
tritsofme Dec 2019 #7
onenote Dec 2019 #8
sl8 Dec 2019 #10
Polybius Dec 2019 #9

Response to Polybius (Original post)

Mon Dec 9, 2019, 05:13 PM

1. there have been too many things that have gone unchallenged

and thus allowed to set precedent for future misdeeds in America

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Response to Polybius (Original post)

Mon Dec 9, 2019, 05:13 PM

2. Yeah, punting the issue down the road for a few more months.

That's pretty much the tactic - maybe a little later, we'll be closer to having a president whose brain doesn't look like Swiss cheese, and the political winds will shift so that scuttling Roe v. Wade won't seem like a good idea.

Shitty, but it seems that's where we're at right now.

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Response to Polybius (Original post)

Mon Dec 9, 2019, 05:14 PM

3. Probably all of them.

As you allude to, taking this case could have been a vehicle for the conservative majority to make a catastrophic ruling against abortion rights.

They are playing the best they can with a losing hand.

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Response to tritsofme (Reply #3)

Mon Dec 9, 2019, 05:20 PM

4. So, then, why didn't four conservatives vote to take the case so they could strike down Roe?


This case would not have presented a vehicle for overturning Roe v. Wade.

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Response to onenote (Reply #4)

Mon Dec 9, 2019, 05:22 PM

5. Probably not their preferred case to do so.

No circuit split to resolve, and they are happy with the result from appellate court.

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Response to tritsofme (Reply #5)

Mon Dec 9, 2019, 05:22 PM

6. Well, then, why didn't the liberals vote to take the case

It can't be because they were afraid of what the conservatives would do if the conservatives didn't want to do it. And the petitioners argued quite strongly that there IS a split in the circuits.

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Response to onenote (Reply #6)

Mon Dec 9, 2019, 05:31 PM

7. As we can't read minds, I'll take the judgment of the liberal justices.

FWIW, good SCOTUS watchers like Mark Stern at Slate are advancing the argument they were too worried about the outcome to take the case.

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Response to tritsofme (Reply #7)

Mon Dec 9, 2019, 06:00 PM

8. Agreed we can't read minds

But I also don't see anything in Stern's analysis that suggests that the liberals on the Court were concerned that this particular case could be turned into a vehicle to overturn Roe. At most he suggests they were concerned that they would lose and the Kentucky law would be upheld. But where's the logic? By not granting cert the effect is that the Kentucky law is upheld -- the very result Stern says the liberals were concerned about.

I think it is just as likely that the liberals demurred on this case because the issue focused on the first amendment rights of doctors and not on the burdens placed on women seeking abortions. If you read the petition for cert, it all but concedes that the state can require ultrasounds and focuses on the requirement that doctors convey the results of the ultrasound to their patients.

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Response to tritsofme (Reply #5)

Tue Dec 10, 2019, 05:06 PM

10. No circuit split? What about Stuart et al. v. Camnitz, in the Fourth Circuit ?

https://reproductiverights.org/case/stuart-et-al-v-camnitz
Stuart et al. v. Camnitz

Ultrasound requirements removed, SCOTUS denied cert.

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Response to tritsofme (Reply #3)

Tue Dec 10, 2019, 04:50 PM

9. I don't think this case would have struck down Row

But perhaps they didn't want this Kentucky law being legal in all 50 states, and didn't wanna risk it.

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