The Supreme Court on Friday blocked a Louisiana law that could have shut down all but one abortion clinic in the state. The law, according to the Associated Press, requires abortion-providers to have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals. Most hospitals, The Los Angeles Times points out, refuse to give such privileges to doctors who conduct abortions.
By a vote of 7-1, the Supreme Court blocked the Louisiana law from taking effect. The lone dissenter was Justice Clarence Thomas.
Friday's ruling offers hope for pro-choice Americans. This week, the Supreme Court also heard arguments in a case from Texas, where lawmakers are requiring admitting privileges for abortion providers and hospital-like standards for the clinics. Supporters of the law say it's a way to ensure the safety of women seeking abortions, while opponents insist it's a tactic to curb the practice altogether. If the law is fully enforced, there will be just 10 clinics left in Texas.
The Supreme Court—which has just eight members following the death last month of Justice Antonin Scalia—voted on the Texas case just hours before issuing the Louisiana order, according to the Associated Press. The outcome of the Texas case likely won't be made public until the summer.
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