The Supreme Court ruled against Texas's restrictive abortion law today in another historic decision for women's rights. Texas House Bill 2, or HB 2 as it is referred to, required abortion clinics to have admitting privileges to hospitals as well as meet the building codes of hospitals, essentially forcing most of the clinics in the state to close. But the court ruled that HB 2 placed "undue burden" on a woman seeking an abortion and therefore deemed the law unconstitutional.
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's opinion on the ruling was particularly prescient of more attempts to close abortion clinics through regulatory laws. In one paragraph, Ginsberg indicates how safe abortions are and how unnecessary it would be to require clinics to meet the same standards as hospitals. Ginsberg concurred with the decision, stating, "it is beyond rational belief that H. B. 2 could genuinely protect the health of women" and she suggests it could actually harm women's health. Comparing the safety of a "tonsillectomy, colonoscopy, and in-office dental surgery" to abortions, Ginsberg wrote, "many medical procedures, including childbirth, are far more dangerous to patients, yet are not subject to ambulatory-surgical-center or hospital admitting privileges requirements." The justice also added, "when a state severely limits access to safe and legal procedures, women in desperate circumstances may resort to unlicensed rogue practitioners." While the court struck down HB 2, Ginsberg is evidently anticipating further attempts by states to restrict abortion in her opinion. Even as women rejoice for their right to chose, the battle is certainly not over.