WASHINGTON - November 7 - Nancy Keenan, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, called the argument scheduled for November 8 before the Supreme Court on the Federal Abortion Ban "a chilling reminder" of what's at stake for women's health and Americans' right to privacy since the Court has been reconfigured by President Bush and his anti-choice colleagues in the Senate.
"The day after the mid-term elections, the Supreme Court will hear a case in which it will determine whether private, medical matters will stay in the hands of women and their doctors, or if politicians will be allowed to interfere in these decisions," Keenan said. "This ban, passed by an anti-choice Congress and signed into law by President Bush, could outlaw abortion as early as the 12th week of pregnancy. The Court should respect the precedent it established six years ago when it struck down a similar abortion ban as unconstitutional. The Federal Abortion Ban contains no exception to protect women's health. If the Court sides with President Bush and upholds this ban, it will have overturned a core protection of Roe v. Wade for women's health and paved the way for anti-choice politicians to further dismantle that landmark decision."
The Federal Abortion Ban was passed by Congress and signed by Bush in 2003. It was then enjoined by three federal courts. President Bush and his anti-choice administration then appealed all three cases to their respective U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeals. In July, the Eighth Circuit upheld the decision issued by the district court in Nebraska; then in February, the Second Circuit and the Ninth Circuit upheld the decisions of their respective district courts. The U. S. Supreme Court has agreed to review President Bush's appeal of the Eighth Circuit decision, Carhart v. Gonzales; and the Ninth Circuit case, Planned Parenthood v. Gonzales.