Federal Judge ignores Supreme Court ruling to overturn Va. law requiring that only physicians perform first trimester abortions

By Olivia Gans Turner, President, Virginia Society for Human Life (VSHL)

Federal District Court Judge Henry E. Hudson

Federal District Court Judge Henry E. Hudson, in a shocking decision handed down Monday, struck down a Virginia law that prohibits advanced practice clinicians, including nurse practitioners and physician’s assistants, from performing abortions in the first trimester of pregnancy. Laws requiring that “physicians only” perform abortions exist in 40 states

In Falls Church Health Care Center v. Oliver Judge Hudson, of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, showed complete disregard for the safety of women having an abortion. In his decision, he claimed that abortion facilities “do not require the onsite presence of a licensed physician.”

But Judge Hudson’s decision in directly contrary to controlling U.S. Supreme Court precedent.

In Mazurek v. Armstrong, the Supreme Court referred to “our repeated statements . . . that the performance of abortions may be restricted to physicians,” noting that Roe v. Wade itself said the “State may determine the term ‘physician’ to mean only a physician currently licensed by the State, and may proscribe any abortion by a person who is not a physician as so defined.’”

In their unceasing quest to promote no-limits destruction of unborn children regardless of stage of development or ability to feel pain, abortion advocates are more extreme even than the Roe v. Wade decision they claim to defend.

Despite—or perhaps because of– the near-certainty that the Supreme Court would overturn this unprincipled holding, we have strong reason to fear that Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring will shirk his constitutional duty to appeal it, prioritizing his personal advocacy of abortion on demand.