Abortion Constitutionality Down Syndrome abortions

Judge Thapar on Roe and Casey

Here  is a link to recent (September 10, 2021) opinion of the Sixth Circuit enjoining two provisions of Tennessee law. One provision banned abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected and the other banned abortions when the doctor performing the abortion knows that the pregnant woman is seeking the abortion because of the race or sex of the baby or because of a prenatal diagnosis that the baby might have Down syndrome.

Judge Thapar concurred in the court’s ruling on the first provision, after making it clear that his vote was because of the Supreme Court’s erroneous decisions in Roe and Casey. Judge Thapar dissented from the court’s judgment that the discrimination provision was void for vagueness.

Here is Judge Thapar’s conclusion: “The argument that the Constitution contains a right to abortion has neither [a page of history nor a volume of logic]. As shown above, the historical evidence is clear. The Constitution leaves decisions like this to the states. The state legislatures can do what we can’t: listen to the community, create fact-specific rules with appropriate exceptions, gather more evidence, and update their laws if things don’t work properly. And if the public is unhappy, it can fight back at the ballot box. The courts should return this choice to the American people—where it belongs.”

Here is a link to  a good article by Carrie Severino commending Judge Thapar’s opinion.  Here is a link to a good post by Ed Whelan to the same effect.

Richard Myers

Richard S. Myers, the Vice-President of UFL, is Professor of Law at Ave Maria School of Law, where he teaches Antitrust, Civil Procedure, Conflict of Laws, Constitutional Law, and Religious Freedom. He is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Kenyon College and earned his law degree at Notre Dame, where he won the law school's highest academic prize. He began his legal career by clerking for Judge John F. Kilkenny of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Professor Myers also worked for Jones, Day, Reavis & Pogue in Washington, D.C. He taught at Case Western Reserve University School of Law and the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law before joining the Ave Maria faculty. He is a co-editor of St. Thomas Aquinas and the Natural Law Tradition: Contemporary Perspectives (Catholic University of American Press, 2004) and a co-editor of Encyclopedia of Catholic Social Thought, Social Science, and Social Policy (Scarecrow Press, 2007). He has also published extensively on constitutional law in law reviews and also testified before Congressional and state legislative hearings on life issues. Married to Mollie Murphy, who is also on the faculty at Ave Maria School of Law, they are the proud parents of six children - Michael, Patrick, Clare, Kathleen, Matthew, and Andrew.