The Supreme Court is scheduled to hear several contentious cases during its current term, including two cases considering the constitutionality of the so-called “partial-birth” abortion ban passed by Congress and signed by President Bush in November of 2003. This abortion procedures ban has been ruled unconstitutional by lower courts in California, Nebraska, and New York because of its lack of a health exception.
A previous Supreme Court case from 2000, Stenberg v. Carhart, found that a similar state law was unconstitutional because it lacked a health exception. The 2000 decision was decided 5-4, with former Justice Sandra Day O’Connor providing the fifth vote against the state abortion procedures ban. The cases to be decided this term are Gonzales v. Carhart and Gonzales v. Planned Parenthood. Oral arguments have been scheduled on November 8, according to Legal Times.