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CourtSpeak: Gonzales v. Carhart Partial-Birth Abortion Case (2007)

Decisions Read more from
Chapter The Roberts Court (2005–present)

Justice Anthony Kennedy (majority): “The Act’s ban on abortions that involve partial delivery of a living fetus furthers the Government’s objectives. No one would dispute that, for many D&E is a procedure itself laden with the power to devalue human life. Congress could nonetheless conclude that the type of abortion proscribed by this Act requires specific regulation because it implicates additional ethical and moral concerns that justify a special prohibition.”

Justice Clarence Thomas (concurring): “I write separately to reiterate my view that the Court’s abortion jurisprudence, including Casey and Roe v. Wade, has no basis in the Constitution.”

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg (dissenting): “Today’s decision is alarming. It refuses to take Casey and Stenberg seriously. It tolerates, indeed applauds, federal intervention to ban nationwide a procedure found necessary and proper in certain cases by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists…. And for the first time since Roe, the Court blesses a prohibition with no exception safeguarding a woman’s health.”

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