Ban on Partial-Birth Abortion Ruled Unconstitutional
San Francisco Ruling a Defeat for Pro-Lifers
Optimism Remains for Other Two Court Challenges to PABA
By Jody Brown and Chad Groening
June 2, 2004
(AgapePress) – Pro-life advocates and Christian groups nationwide are reacting strongly to a liberal San Francisco federal judge’s declaration that the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act (PABA) — signed into law in November but tied up in court ever since — is unconstitutional. Federal Judge Phyllis Hamilton ruled on Tuesday that a woman’s right to have an abortion is paramount, and that it’s “irrelevant” whether the unborn child suffers pain in the process.
In handing down her decision in Planned Parenthood Federation of America v. Ashcroft, Hamilton — a Bill Clinton appointee — said PABA poses an “undue burden” on a woman’s ability to choose a second trimester abortion, is “unconstitutionally vague,” and requires a health exception as set forth in an earlier Supreme Court decision. On those bases, the judge ruled that U.S. Attorney General Ashcroft and his successors cannot enforce the law on Planned Parenthood’s facilities or on the abortionists, whether working at the agency’s facilities or on a referral basis.
Read the entire article on the Nixatron blog.