Majority Leader Hoyer’s Statement on Supreme Court’s Ruling in Abortion Procedure Case

For Immediate Release:

April 18, 2007

Contact:Stacey Farnen Bernards
202-225-3130

WASHINGTON, DC – House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer issued the following statement today in response to the United States Supreme Court’s decision upholding a nationwide ban on “partial birth” abortion.

“I have high regard for the Supreme Court.  However, I am deeply disappointed by the Court’s decision today to uphold a federal law restricting a woman’s right to choose and to protect her health.

“The Court’s decision today is nothing less than a retreat from well-established Court precedent.  The so-called ‘partial-birth’ abortion ban, for example, provides no exception if a woman’s health is in danger or if a doctor determines that the banned procedure is the safest for a woman’s health.  Instead, the law subjects doctors to criminal penalty if they perform the banned procedure.

“When the Republican-controlled Congress adopted the law that was upheld today, it was clear to observers that the measure was not about enacting sound public policy but scoring political points.  The failure of the measure to include even a health exception for a woman facing the most difficult crisis of her life underscored this point, which is why six federal courts that considered the law determined that it was unconstitutional.

“In the days ahead, Americans will come to understand the full implications of today’s decision.  But it is clear that today’s decision breaks with decades of sound constitutional jurisprudence.”

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