(No, not about the basketball finals.)
Courts are reining in the extremists on reproductive rights.
The Supreme Court refused Tuesday to wade back into one of its most controversial subjects: abortion.
The court refused to consider Indiana’s appeal of a lower court decision striking down its denial of Medicaid funds to health care providers that perform abortions. The law was challenged by Planned Parenthood.
While federal law blocks the use of government funds to perform most abortions (with exceptions for rape, incest and woman’s health), the Indiana ban went further by denying Medicaid funds for other purposes as well. In order to receive Medicaid funds, providers would have to create separate entities for their abortion services. Hospitals were excluded from the law.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit in Chicago ruled that the ban on Medicaid funds was unwarranted because it was not related to Planned Parenthood’s ability to perform medical services. But it upheld a ban on federal block grant funds. The high court will let both rulings stand.
And last week a federal court struck down Arizona’s ban on abortions after 20 weeks.
These rulings are hopeful signs that the courts — including the Supremes — are going to look carefully at the laws being foisted upon women in places like North Dakota and Alabama where the anti-choicers are doing everything they possibly can to prove that smaller and limited government intrusion does not apply to uteri.