No Racketeering Violations for Anti-Abortion ProtestsFebruary 28, 2006 15:31 The Supreme Court dealt a setback Tuesday to abortion clinics in a two-decade-old legal fight over anti-abortion protests, ruling that federal extortion and racketeering laws cannot be used to ban demonstrations.
Anti-abortion groups brought the appeal after the 7th Circuit had asked a trial judge to determine whether a nationwide injunction could be supported by charges that protesters had made threats of violence absent a connection with robbery or extortion.
No Challenge To Roe Foreseen In TexasFebruary 27, 2006 17:45 The GOP-led Texas Legislature hasn't been quiet about its opposition to abortion or shy about restricting women's access to it.
In recent years, lawmakers have required parental consent, a 24-hour waiting period, state-directed counseling and state funding for abortion alternatives.
All this, according to some abortion rights groups, makes Texas one of 21 states most likely to ban abortion if the U.S. Supreme Court ever gives them the chance.
Plan B for Colorado Morning After LegislationFebruary 24, 2006 17:45 CO state lawmakers are weighing legislation again this year that would provide easier access to emergency contraception. Sponsors have changed the bill in a sensible effort to overcome objections that doomed it a year ago.
Gov. Bill Owens, citing the encroachment of freedom of religion, vetoed a version that would have required hospitals - including those run by the Catholic Church - to inform rape victims who sought medical attention that the so-called morning-after pill was available.
Denver Archbishop Charles Chaput wrote in these pages last year that Catholics could support emergency contraception if it "truly can prevent ovulation" but not if it prevents a fertilized egg from implanting in the uterine wall, which the church believes the drug is designed to do. The church believes human life begins when an egg is fertilized and that preventing it from implanting would constitute an abortion.
South Dakota Legislature Passes Bill To Ban AbortionFebruary 23, 2006 20:08 The glove has been thrown down in the war for women's rights in the US...
Lawmakers in the midwestern U.S. state of South Dakota have passed legislation that would ban all abortions except when a woman's life is in danger.
After final legislative approval, the state's governor must sign the bill in order for it to become law. The governor, Republican Mike Rounds, has said he opposes abortion.
If approved, the South Dakota bill would directly challenge the U.S. Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion. Doctors in the state who perform abortion would face a maximum five-year prison term.
Losing Our Values In The War On TerrorFebruary 18, 2006 17:36 "I never imagined I would live to see the day... One cannot find strong enough words to condemn what Britain and the United States have accepted... habeas corpus is part of our freedom..."
How humbling that it takes an African churchman from one of our former colonies, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, to warn that Britain is tearing up centuries of civil liberties and squandering its moral authority by the way it conducts the war on terror at home and abroad.
Consider the events of a truly depressing week. Having failed so far in his attempt to tear up habeas corpus and jail suspects for 90 days without charge, Mr Blair is openly playing politics with terrorism.
Wal-Mart Told To Stock Morning-After PillFebruary 15, 2006 21:36 Wal-Mart has been instructed by the Board of Pharmacy in Massachusetts that it must stock the 'morning after' contraceptive pill. The store had refused to stock the pill, purportedly for moral reasons.
Now if we can just get a law passed that says it's criminal for pharmacists to refuse to fill a contraceptive prescription on moral grounds... I'd be happy.
Gay Marriage Lawyers Grilled By NJ High CourtFebruary 15, 2006 19:55 New Jersey Supreme Court justices grilled lawyers Wednesday on what business the state has preventing homosexual couples from marrying as the nation's latest battle over gay marriage reached the Garden State's highest court.
The arguments came in the case known as Lewis v. Harris, in which seven longtime gay couples sued the state, claiming the state Constitution should afford them the right to marry.
The Truth About Bush And AbortionFebruary 09, 2006 20:08 Politicians lying about the facts surrounding abortion to push a religious agenda???? NO WAY!!!
Bush should know... he's an expert on abortion... after all, his college girlfriend had one.
Abortion Opponents Make ProgressFebruary 08, 2006 22:51 With some success, abortion foes are pushing bills in more states to require doctors to tell abortion seekers the procedure can cause pain to fetuses.
'Fetal pain' bills were introduced in 19 states in 2005, and were passed in Arkansas, Georgia, Minnesota and Wisconsin, USA Today reports. The Wisconsin bill, however, was vetoed last month by Democratic Gov. Jim Doyle, who cited a report in the Journal of the American Medical Association that there is no conclusive evidence of when a fetus first feels pain.
Stones' Fury At CensorshipFebruary 08, 2006 18:34 In an overly politically correct world, it seems even the iconic Rolling Stones from the rebellious '60's are censored for broad audiences. Pathetic. Are those NFL folks a bunch of panzies?
Kansas Supreme Court Ruling Allows State AG To Seek Abortion RecordsFebruary 06, 2006 18:03 The Kansas Supreme Court on Friday ruled unanimously that state Attorney General Phill Kline (R) can seek access to the medical records of 90 women and girls who underwent late-term abortions in 2003 at two clinics, but if a state judge rules that Kline is allowed to see the files, the patients' names and personal information will be withheld from the records, the Kansas City Star reports (Klepper, Kansas City Star, 2/4). Kline in 2004 subpoenaed the records from the two clinics -- Comprehensive Health, which is operated by Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri in Overland Park, Kan., and Women's Health Care Services in Wichita, Kan. -- because he believes there is probable cause that each record contains evidence of felony. The original subpoena asked that the records include each patient's name, medical history, birth control practices, psychological profile and sexual history and asked for the records of all women and girls who sought abortions at or after 22 weeks' gestation. The clinics in March 2005 filed a brief with the state Supreme Court requesting that the court block Kline's subpoena. Kline in September 2005 filed a motion with the state Supreme Court saying that he did not need the names of the women and girls whose medical records he requested. In the motion he also agreed to allow a judge to choose the physician to review the files.
Alito's First Move: Stop Prisoner's ExecutionFebruary 04, 2006 05:53 Within hours of joining the US Supreme Court on Wednesday, judge Samuel Alito split with the court's conservatives, refusing to let Missouri execute a death-row inmate contesting lethal injection.
Justice Alito, handling his first case, sided with inmate Michael Taylor, who had won a stay from an appeals court earlier in the evening. Chief Justice John Roberts and judges Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas supported lifting the stay, but Justice Alito joined the remaining five members in turning down Missouri's last-minute request to allow a midnight execution.
Is Abortion Bad? - Pro-Life Swingers For Birth ControlFebruary 02, 2006 19:26 Voters on the Right and the Left can agree that the act of abortion is a 'bad' thing. Those on the Right attempt to push it into the moral territory of being 'wrong,' while on the Left, it is viewed as an unfortunate consequence of poor education, overpopulation, and occasionally poor personal decision making. Most reasonable Americans would like to see an alternative, such as better acess and use of contraception, pushed as a viable alternative to abortion, without outlawing abortion.
US Tech Firms Snub Discussion on Human RightsFebruary 01, 2006 17:30 Four of the top U.S. technology companies refused an invitation to attend a congressional briefing on the subject of human rights and the Internet in China.
Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, and Cisco Systems did not respond to formal invitations sent by the Congressional Human Rights Caucus but called, or emailed, their refusals to attend the briefing on Wednesday.
We never got formal confirmation from anyone, said Lynne Weil, spokesperson for Rep. Tom Lantos (D-California), one of the caucus leaders. Three of the companies called and one company emailed us saying they could not attend. Cisco called first, then Microsoft, then Google, then Yahoo.
Partial Birth Abortion Act Ruled Unconstitutional By U.S. CourtsFebruary 01, 2006 05:57 Two federal appeals courts yesterday upheld rulings that the Partial Birth Abortion Act, passed by Congress in 2003 but barred by the courts, is unconstitutional because it does not include an exception when the health of a pregnant woman is at risk.
The rulings, which came on the same day from three-judge panels in the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, in New York, and the Ninth Circuit, in San Francisco, were substantially based on a United States Supreme Court decision in a Nebraska case in 2000. In that case, the Supreme Court found that any abortion ban must include an exception allowing a procedure that involves a partly delivered fetus after the first trimester of pregnancy, known among opponents as partial birth abortion, when alternative methods could endanger the woman's health.
Sweeping Anti-Abortion Laws ProposedFebruary 01, 2006 05:56 Legislators in at least five states are proposing bold anti-abortion measures as the Bush administration reshapes the U.S. Supreme Court, a report said.
With the goal of challenging the Roe vs. Wade ruling that ensured a woman`s right to an abortion, lawmakers in Georgia, Indiana, Ohio, South Dakota and Tennessee propose banning all abortions except when the woman`s life is in danger, Stateline.org reported.
If enacted, legal experts said the laws would be the first absolute abortion bans since the landmark 1973 ruling.
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