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Supreme Court blocks Louisiana abortion clinic law

Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts joined the four liberal members in temporarily blocking a Louisiana law that would have closed some of the few remaining abortion clinics in the state. Justice Brett Kavanaugh wrote the dissenting opinion.

The law, originally enacted in 2014, has never taken effect. The Supreme Court may still consider whether the law unduly burdens a woman’s access to abortion at another time.

The Supreme Court did not give a reason for granting the stay.

The court temporarily stayed the law last week. Justice Samuel Alito said in a brief order Friday that the justices need more time to review arguments for and against the law. The law requires doctors at abortion clinics to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital.

The Supreme Court struck down a similar law in Texas in 2016, with Justice Anthony Kennedy serving as a deciding vote in the 5-3 decision. Kavanaugh, a conservative jurist who many Republicans hope will help shift the court to the right, has since replaced Kennedy.

A judge in the federal district court in Louisiana struck down the law in 2017, but it was upheld by a federal appeals court in September. The appeals court said it’s not clear that any clinic would close.

Author: Grace Segers/CBS News
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