Deirdre McQuade
Deirdre McQuade
WASHINGTON — The U.S. Supreme Court, in striking down a Texas abortion law, has put profit above patient safety, says a leader for the U.S. Catholic bishops’ pro-life office.

Deirdre McQuade said just after the June 27 ruling that the Texas law “simply required abortion facilities to meet the same health and safety standards as other ambulatory surgical centers.”

In a 5-3 vote, the court removed restrictions on Texas abortion clinics that required them to comply with standards of ambulatory surgical centers and required their doctors to have admitting privileges at local hospitals.

Opponents of the law claimed the requirements were aimed at closing abortion clinics. But the state and many pro-life advocates maintained that the law protected women’s health. The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and other religious groups submitted a joint friend of the court brief in the case supporting the Texas law, which was similar to other state laws regulating abortion clinics across the country.

Justice Stephen Breyer, who wrote the opinion, said the restrictions on the clinics provide little benefit and “pose a substantial obstacle to women seeking abortions and constitute an ‘undue burden’ on their constitutional right to do so.”