Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Court Dismisses CA Challenge to Weldon Amendment

San Francisco Chronicle: Judge: State's anti-abortion suit premature, by Bob Egelko:

A federal judge dismissed on Tuesday California's challenge to a federal anti-abortion law that threatens the state with huge financial penalties, saying the lawsuit - filed in January 2005 - was premature because the alleged state-federal conflict might never arise.

The suit, filed by then-state Attorney General Bill Lockyer, sought to overturn an amendment to a federal spending bill that was first signed by President Bush in December 2004 and has been repeatedly extended. Sponsored by Rep. Dave Weldon, R-Fla., it denies a wide range of federal funding to states that discriminate against any doctor, hospital or insurer that does not offer abortions or abortion referrals.

State officials said the Weldon Amendment could cost California $37 billion if the state enforced its own law requiring any hospital or clinic to perform an abortion in an emergency, when childbirth would threaten the woman's life or health. That law applies to doctors and hospitals who, under another California statute, are ordinarily entitled to refuse to perform abortions for religious reasons.


Abortion, In the Courts, Religion and Reproductive Rights | Permalink

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