Friday, March 16, 2018

Ohio's Law Banning Abortion Because of Down's Syndrome Is Enjoined

In Preterm-Cleveland v. Himes, (SD OH, March 14, 2018), an Ohio federal district court granted a preliminary injunction against enforcement of Ohio's recently enacted ban on a physician performing an abortion if the woman's decision is based in whole or part on a pre-natal indication of Down's syndrome.The court said in part:
The State argues that Roe and Casey do not apply for two reasons. First, the State argues the “Supreme Court of the United States has never recognized a right to abort an unborn child on the basis of a disability.” ... The State suggests that Roe and Casey only apply to women who accidentally become pregnant.... The State argues that women only have the right to choose whether to have a child, not the right to decide whether to have a particular child....
This argument is not well-taken. The interest protected by the Due Process Clause is a woman’s right to choose to terminate her pregnancy pre-viability, and that right is categorical.
Reacting to the decision, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine said:
 I strongly disagree with the district court's ruling that there is a categorical right to abortion that prevents even any consideration of Ohio's profound interests in combatting discrimination against a class of human beings based upon disability. We will be appealing.
Jurist reports on the decision.