Brett Kavanaugh Just Helped Planned Parenthood Keep Its Funding

Kavanaugh and Chief Justice Roberts just voted with liberals to prevent the SCOTUS from hearing a case about defunding.

In a surprising move, newly minted Justice Brett Kavanaugh and Chief Justice John Roberts joined with the Court’s liberal justices to prevent the high court from deciding whether states could defund Planned Parenthood. The move will let stand lower court rulings that struck down two state laws in Louisiana and Kansas that would have barred the abortion provider from receiving Medicare funds.

Louisiana and Kansas had sought certiorari to allow the Supreme Court to hear their appeals in Gee v. Planned Parenthood of Gulf Coast and Andersen v. Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri. Four judges must agree to accept a case and the votes of Kavanaugh and Roberts to deny certiorari killed any chance that the Court would hear the Planned Parenthood cases, let alone allow states to defund the group.

Several other states have attempted to ban funding for Planned Parenthood at the state level after Republicans in Washington were unable to move a funding ban through Congress. For now, it appears that any further attempts to cut off the group’s federal money will be defeated.

Chief Justice John Roberts typically votes in the conservative bloc but has been key to some high-profile disappointments for constitutionalists. Roberts was the key vote in saving Obamacare with his opinion that the individual mandate was really a tax and therefore constitutional.

Kavanaugh’s vote may surprise some, but several observers predicted that if President Trump wanted to overturn Roe v. Wade, Kavanaugh was the wrong judge to pick. Similar to Roberts, Kavanaugh ruled on an Obamacare case in which he did not dispute the constitutionality of the health insurance law. Prior to Kavanaugh’s confirmation, Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) argued that Kavanaugh was a judge who would uphold precedent. That statement was interpreted as an indication that Kavanaugh would not strike down Roe and possibly Obamacare as well.

Justice Clarence Thomas, who was appointed to the Court by the recently departed George H.W. Bush, dissented, writing that the other judges were afraid to tackle the hot-button issue. “Some tenuous connection to a politically fraught issue does not justify abdicating our judicial duty,” Thomas said. “If anything, neutrally applying the law is all the more important when political issues are in the background.”

The decision not to grant certiorari is a hard hit for pro-life groups. “If Kavanaugh was going to deal a major blow to health care rights during his first session on the court, this would have been the case to do it,” Tim Jost, an emeritus professor at Washington and Lee University School of Law, said in Politico.

During the 2016 election, Donald Trump’s pro-life platform and promise to appoint judges who would overturn Roe was a major reason that many Republicans held their noses and voted for him over Hillary. Given Mr. Trump’s long pro-choice history and the ready availability of more firmly pro-life, constitutionalist judges such as Amy Coney Barrett, many of those voters must wonder today if Justice Kavanaugh has gone rogue or if he is doing exactly what President Trump and other pro-choice Republicans wanted him to.

Comments
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bub23
bub23

Is this not a law issue that the states cannot decide how federal money is allocated? If a state accepts the federal money than they are bound by the federal laws that created the funding, are they not? Now if the federal law was that the funding was not to be used for abortion, then the state would be bound by that law. So I see Kavanaugh kicking the decision back to the federal law makers. In other words, he decided not to make law from the bench. I may not like the decision but it does need to be kicked back to the law makers who are accountable to the voters.

RightInMN
RightInMN

So Evangelicals sold their soul for this.

napleslover
napleslover

Kavanaugh's vote in favor of Planned Parenthood is not a surprise to real conservatives. We looked at his past rulings and knew he would never be a constitutional conservative. Democrats must be cheering loudly. This is exactly what they hoped for.

Still Jules
Still Jules

@Oregun, you state with such certainty that something is happening resulting in the total destruction of all things that were good about conservitive (sic) policy.

Strong words. Can you back them up? That is give examples of how support for Trump policies and actions is really at the "expense of total destruction of all things that were good about conservitive policy".

Which "conservative policy" is being "destroyed" by supporting the man who is implementing so many conservative policies? Which "victories" do you see as "overstated" or "short term" or "imaginary"?

Specifics, please, as you are so adamant that you must have examples.

Still Jules
Still Jules

So many people ignorant of the case and of the basis for the decision, frantically trying to shove it into their own templates to "prove" something, each side howling that this supports his or her pet theory.