National Right to Life and Louisiana Right to Life representatives speak about today’s Supreme Court oral arguments

WASHINGTON—Earlier today, representatives of National Right to Life (NRLC) and its Louisiana affiliate, Louisiana Right to Life (LARTL), spoke outside the U.S. Supreme Court while the Court heard oral arguments in June Medical Services, L.L.C. v. Russo

At stake is Louisiana’s 2014 “Unsafe Abortion Protection Act” which requires that abortionists have admitting privileges to a hospital within 30 miles of an abortion clinic. Louisiana already requires doctors who perform surgery at outpatient surgical centers to have hospital privileges. Act 620 extends that requirement to include abortionists. 

NRLC President Carol Tobias and Steve Scalise, House Minority Whip

The National Right to Life Committee and Louisiana Right to Life filed an amicus brief with the U.S. Supreme Court supporting Louisiana’s “Unsafe Abortion Protection Act” 

Carol Tobias, president of National Right to Life said: 

For years, the abortion industry has carved out an exemption for itself from minimal health and safety requirements intended to protect unborn children and their mothers. They insist they should not be required to follow the same laws as other surgical centers because, somehow, that would be “singling” them out. That is nonsense.

The law in Louisiana requires that doctors at ambulatory surgical centers have admitting privileges at a local hospital. Why should the abortion industry be exempt? Why should they receive special treatment?

Hospital admitting privileges are called “privileges” for a reason. A doctor must meet certain requirements established by the hospital before he or she is allowed to practice there. Those privileges are usually given to doctors based on credentials and performance. 

If the abortion industry is really worried about women, they should want an admitting privileges requirement, in order to reassure women that they are getting good care. If admitting privileges are not required, the door is open for all substandard doctors to start performing abortions in LA.

I stand here today in support of Act 620 and the Louisiana citizens who want to enact laws to better protect women. The Supreme Court should allow Louisiana to honor that noble goal.

Together with State Rep. Katrina Jackson, Louisiana Right to Life passed the 2014 “Unsafe Abortion Protection Act” with a bi-partisan majority in the legislature to protect the health of Louisiana women.

Alexandra Seghers, director of education for Louisiana Right to Life spoke directly to pro-abortion groups and their allies, saying: 

While you abortion advocates say you fight for “women’s rights”, we stand here today with actual Louisiana women, fighting for their lives.

While you say that emergencies are rare and hospital admitting privileges aren’t necessary, we say, tell that to the woman last year who suffered at the hands of one of our abortionists, bleeding out, without having the emergency supplies on hand to stop it. She had to have an emergency hysterectomy after all of her delays in care. 

You say that abortion should be legal and safe, we ask why you don’t join us in condemning Louisiana abortion facilities for not sanitizing their equipment between abortions, for having unqualified staff neglecting patient’s vital signs, and for protecting statutory rapists.

We here know that they already disregard the life of the innocent unborn, so it is not far from that to know that they also disregard the lives of their mothers. Today we are shedding a blinding spotlight over all of their attempts to keep in the dark these abusive health violations, their for-profit motive, and these brave Louisiana women’s stories.

This law, the Unsafe Abortion Protection Act, Act 620, was written by women, starting in our very own Louisiana Right to Life office, for women, and now being defended by women. Because you know what? Empowered women empower women. 

To June Medical services and all of you abortion facilities in my state’s backyard, this is not about closing you. This is about expecting the decency that what you claim to be “women’s health” be upheld by a lick of basic health standards. 

Thank you to our Louisiana Attorney General’s team, thank you to our Louisiana Representatives and Senators, Democrat and Republican, women and men, for together stating that those women, especially in such a critical moment, should receive the best possible care we can legally provide. 

We look forward to the day that all unborn babies will be protected by law and welcomed with love. And abortion advocates, while you’re keeping abortion legal, we are also fighting for the day that your bloody profits are not gained through the danger and demise of the women walking in your doors.

Until that day comes, you are too incompetent. You are too unsafe. You need to step aside. You do not deserve to speak on behalf of Louisiana women.

It’s 2020. Women can speak for ourselves. 

The U.S. Supreme Court will also be looking at third-party standing—whether abortionists can sue on behalf of patients who have not actually come forward to challenge a law. 

The amicus brief can be found here