Amicus Brief Opposes Ideologically Motivated Women's Health Care Regulations

Skadden filed an amici curiae brief in the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of several health care organizations, arguing that the challenged provisions of Texas' 2013 law regulating clinics that provide abortions, House Bill 2, do not advance patient health and safety.

The brief argues that any health rationale for the law appears to be pretextual because: (1) no competent evidence before the state legislature or the district court demonstrated that the statute's provisions would promote health; (2) Texas has not imposed similar restrictions on much riskier outpatient procedures; and (3) the public statements of key Texas officials indicate that many of the law's supporters were motivated by a desire to close abortion clinics, to make abortions more difficult to obtain, and to evade the Supreme Court's rulings in Roe and Casey.

The amici also observe a broader, baleful trend of state legislatures' using patient health as a pretext to regulate health care for unrelated ideological reasons. Because the amici share a profound concern that this trend will harm patients, they argue that courts should apply greater scrutiny to those health care-related laws that burden constitutional rights by requiring states to offer evidence that these laws, in fact, advance patient health.