The Supreme Court has refused to hear a challenge to Kentucky’s informed consent requirements, therefore upholding the law and signifying another win for the pro-life movement. Previously, a federal appeals court upheld the law, only to have that decision appealed by the ACLU.
The Ultrasound Informed Consent Act was passed in 2017, and was originally overturned by a lower court after the ACLU challenged it. However, after a challenge from the state, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the ruling, rejecting the idea that the law challenged doctors’ free speech rights.
“With this background in mind, we hold that H.B. 2 provides relevant information. The information conveyed by an ultrasound image, its description, and the audible beating fetal heart gives a patient greater knowledge of the unborn life inside her,” U.S. Circuit Court Judge John K. Bush wrote in his ruling. “This also inherently provides the patient with more knowledge about the effect of an abortion procedure: it shows her what, or whom, she is consenting to terminate. That this information might persuade a woman to change her mind does not render it suspect under the First Amendment.”
The ACLU unsurprisingly slammed the ruling.
“By refusing to review the 6th Circuit’s ruling, the Supreme Court has rubber-stamped extreme political interference in the doctor-patient relationship,” Alexa Kolbi-Molinas, senior staff attorney at the ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project, said in a statement. “This law is not only unconstitutional, but as leading medical experts and ethicists explained, deeply unethical.”
But while abortion advocates deny that informed consent laws are necessary, polling has consistently shown that Americans support informed consent laws, as well as other restrictions on abortion. And what rarely is acknowledged is why these laws are necessary: because the abortion industry has a bad habit of lying to women.
The Kentucky law requires that women have an ultrasound before undergoing an abortion. The doctor must describe the ultrasound, and offer the women the chance to hear the audio of the heartbeat; she is not required to see the images or listen. But as a Live Action investigation found, women are not typically given the truth by abortion staffers about fetal development, because if women were given accurate information, there would be a greater chance that they might change their mind and leave.
Live Action founder and president Lila Rose celebrated the decision. “When women have the chance to see the humanity of their child & hear their heartbeat, many reject the violence of abortion,” she tweeted. “This is a great win for Kentucky & our nation.”