01/10/2012 NEWS ORLEANS, LA — A three-judge panel on the federal Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals unanimously upheld the constitutionality of the Texas sonogram law and ordered a lower court in Austin to remove a temporary injunction that prevents enforcement of key provisions.
“We are thrilled that the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the lower court acted improperly by preventing complete enforcement of the Texas Sonogram Law,” said Joe Pojman, Ph.D., TAL’s executive director. “Women deserve the protections of the Sonogram Law, including the right to see the image of the unborn child and to hear the child’s heartbeat, if they wish. Abortion providers can no longer deny women this critical information.”
“Under U.S. Supreme Court precedent, states may require a physician to provide a pregnant women considering abortion with truthful, nonmisleading information that might be relevant to her decision to undergo the procedure. That is all the State of Texas requires in House Bill 15.”
In November, Texas Alliance for Life filed a scholarly amicus curiae (friend-of-the-court) brief in the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals to defend the constitutionality of the Texas sonogram law, House Bill 15.
House Bill 15, authored by Texas State Rep. Sid Miller (R-Stephenville), sponsored by Sen. Dan Patrick (R-Houston), and signed by Gov. Rick Perry in May, raises the standard of care regarding informed consent for abortion to the level that a patient would expect for any other medical or surgical procedure.
The New York-based Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR), representing a San Antonio abortion facility called Reproductive Services and Dr. Alan Braid who performs abortions, sued in federal court in June to prevent enforcement of House Bill 15. On August 30 Judge Sam Sparks in Austin issued a preliminary injunction against enforcing key provisions, including the right of a woman to see the image of her unborn child and to hear the heartbeat. The CRR has 14 days to appeal.
(This article was published by the Texas Alliance for Life’s website on 1/10/2012)