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A divided Supreme Court stopped Louisiana from enforcing new regulations on abortion clinics in a test of the conservative court’s views on abortion rights.

The justices said by a 5-4 vote late Thursday that they will not allow the state to put into effect a law that requires abortion providers to have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals.

Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. joined the court’s four liberals in putting a hold on the law, pending a full review of the case.

President Trump’s two Supreme Court appointees, Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett M. Kavanaugh, were among the four conservative members of the court who would have allowed the law to take effect.

Kavanaugh wrote a dissenting opinion in which he said the court’s action was premature because the state had made clear it would allow abortion providers an additional 45 days to obtain admitting privileges before it started enforcing the law.

If the doctors succeed, they can continue performing abortions, he said. If they fail, they could return to court, Kavanaugh said.

The law is very similar to a Texas measure the justices struck down three years ago. Roberts dissented in that case.

But the composition of the court has changed since then, with Kavanaugh replacing Justice Anthony Kennedy, who voted to strike down the Texas law. Trump had pledged during the campaign to appoint “pro-life” justices, and abortion opponents are hoping the more conservative bench will be more open to upholding abortion restrictions.

Louisiana abortion providers and a district judge who initially heard the case said one or maybe two of the state’s three abortion clinics would have to close under the new law. There would be at most two doctors who could meet its requirements, they said.

But the federal appeals court in New Orleans rejected those claims, doubting that any clinics would have to close and saying the doctors had not tried hard enough to establish relationships with local hospitals.

In January, the full appeals court voted 9-6 not to get involved in the case, setting up the Supreme Court appeal.

The law had been scheduled to take effect Monday, but Justice Samuel Alito delayed the effective date at least through Thursday to give the justices more time. He and Justice Clarence Thomas were the other dissenters Thursday.

The justices could decide this spring whether to add the case to their calendar for the term that begins in October.

The case is June Medical Services v. Gee.

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  1. Fred Sheehan

    February 11, 2019 at 7:51 am

    In 2003 the American College of Surgeons, along with the American Medical Association and an additional 30 professional medical organizations, met to create and pass “10 Core Principles” for office-based surgery safety standard, recognizing the increase of invasive surgeries occurring outside of hospital settings. One of these core principles is: “Physicians performing office-based surgery must have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital, a transfer agreement with another physician who has admitting privileges at a nearby hospital, or maintain an emergency transfer agreement with a nearby hospital. How is Louisiana’s law different than laws passed in the several other states that have adopted such requirements for abortion clinics?

  2. James

    February 11, 2019 at 7:52 am


    • Moracle

      February 11, 2019 at 5:28 pm

      I have felt that way ever since he became the One Person Responsible for the plague of Obamacare being thrown on this nation.

      John Roberts is one of the Greatest Disappointments ever placed on the Supreme Court by a Republican President….

      His name shall ever be held in contempt and disgrace by those who expected him to judge on the side of right.

  3. Peter Gaskin

    February 11, 2019 at 8:31 am

    I bet the justices bank account has risen he has been bought out by the democrat mafia

  4. Carol Dugan

    February 11, 2019 at 2:46 pm

    The Democrats have something on Roberts or the liberals are paying him well for his vote on the Supreme Court

  5. Joe

    February 11, 2019 at 3:49 pm

    Sounds like roberts is a faggot

  6. Joe

    February 11, 2019 at 3:52 pm

    Sounds like roberts is a faggot. Sounds like a civil was is coming. Guess which side is going to win

  7. MissD

    February 11, 2019 at 4:07 pm

    Somebody has something Roberts … it’ll come out in time !

  8. Joe

    February 11, 2019 at 4:17 pm

    Since roe v wade we have killed 7.6 million babies. The united states has become the new nazi nation. Dont talk about how bad the nazi’s were, we are No netter. Seig heil america.all because women wantto spread their legs. Hope your proud

  9. cathy

    February 11, 2019 at 5:41 pm

    Spending eternity in a place known for the gnashing and grinding of teeth in a fiery furnace isn’t good enough for the people who perform, support and allow the killing of Children.

  10. Linda

    February 11, 2019 at 7:00 pm

    Roberts has the honor of being a white cockroach.

  11. polly

    February 11, 2019 at 7:52 pm

    Selling his soul. The truth will come out soon

  12. Rob

    February 11, 2019 at 11:09 pm

    Wish this guy would take a trip to a Ranch.

  13. Harold

    February 12, 2019 at 12:03 am

    John Roberts has proven that he has no morals and has joined in the bloody handed murder of the most innocent people in the world, the unborn babies there being killed daily.All who join this slimy crowd will face this in the end of their miserable life!

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