Court Won't Revive Louisiana Abortion Law
Justices let 'judicial bypass' rules stand on parental consent
WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, Oct. 20) -- The Supreme Court today declined to hear an appeal of a Louisiana parental-consent law that would have made it more difficult for unmarried teens under 18 to get an abortion.
On an 8-1 vote, the court let stand lower court rulings that said the never-enforced 1995 law amounted to undue interference in girls' abortion rights.
Louisiana's 1995 law was never put in force and was subsequently brought into greater conformity with other states this year to give judges discretion to allow abortions when it is in the girl's interest or the girl is mature enough to make her own decision.
Justice Antonin Scalia voted to hear the state's appeal and consider reinstating the invalidated law.
Most states have laws requiring unmarried girls under 18 to get the permission of one parent before having an abortion, and the court has upheld such laws.
But those past rulings also have required a judicial bypass, allowing for abortions when a girl is judged mature enough or when notifying a parent would not be in the girl's best interests.
For a girl found not to be mature enough to make an abortion decision on her own, the 1995 law required that at least one parent attend a hearing to determine if an abortion was in the girl's best interests. In effect, the 1995 law gave judges wider discretion to bar minors from getting abortions.
The law quickly was challenged by abortion providers, and a federal trial judge barred its enforcement.
The case was Ieyoub vs. Causeway Medical Suite, 97-92.CNN's Charles Bierbauer contributed to this report.
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Monday Oct. 20, 1997
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