Supreme Court stays injunction against Idaho abortion law

 January 8, 2024

During the 2016 presidential campaign, then-candidate Donald Trump pledged that he would appoint pro-life justices to the Supreme Court.

Trump's promise was vindicated again last week after America's highest judicial body blocked the Biden administration's attempt to stop an Idaho abortion law. 

Biden administration points to 1986 law

In a ruling issued this past Friday, the Court stayed a preliminary injunction which had been issued by the United States District Court for the District of Idaho.

According to Reuters, the injunction prevented Idaho from enforcing its Defense of Life Act, a piece of legislation which protects children at all stages of pregnancy.

As Breitbart noted, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued a guidance in 2022 arguing that the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act of 1986 (EMTALA) requires hospital emergency rooms to provide abortion or lose the right to receive federal funding and participate in Medicaid.

The administration then filed a lawsuit against Idaho, which resulted in a district judge enjoining the state from enforcing the Defense of Life Act.

Lawyers for Idaho noted that EMTALA does not mention abortion

While that injunction was initially stayed by a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, it was later reinstated following an en banc review.

As Breitbart explained, Idaho contends that EMTALA was never intended to force emergency room doctors to carry out abortions.

Lawyers for the state have pointed to the fact that the law mandates stabilizing care for both pregnant women as well as children in the womb during emergency situations.

"EMTALA does not even mention abortion. That statutory silence alone is powerful evidence that Congress did not intend to preempt state abortion laws, particularly given EMTALA’s savings clause," Idaho's petition was quoted as saying.

"It would be odd indeed if Congress had tucked authority to negate the enforcement of state abortion laws in a relatively obscure provision of the Medicare Act," it added.

Biden lashes out at Supreme Court

For his part, President Joe Biden put out a statement on Friday that denounced the Court's decision to rescind the injunction.

"Today’s Supreme Court order allows Idaho's extreme abortion ban to go back into effect and denies women critical emergency abortion care required by federal law," the president declared.

"The Vice President and I believe that health care decisions should be made by women and their doctors, not politicians. We will continue to defend a woman’s ability to access emergency care under federal law," he added.

" A free people [claim] their rights, as derived from the laws of nature."
Thomas Jefferson
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