The Supreme Court Just Saved Louisiana’s Abortion Clinics

For now.

Jackson Women's Health in Mississippi, where similar restrictions have closed all but one clinic in the stateAP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis

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Updated, 3/4/2016, 6:20 p.m. EST: The Supreme Court temporarily blocked the Louisiana law requiring abortion providers to have admitting privileges with local hospitals. The law will remain on hold while the state appeals the decision to a federal district court in Louisiana.

The US Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit on Wednesday upheld a Texas-style law requiring all abortion providers in Louisiana to have admitting privileges with local hospitals.

The now-active law will shutter three of the four clinics left in Louisiana. This means that for many women, the closest option will be the clinic in Jackson, Mississippi, which is the only clinic remaining in Mississippi, where strict abortion regulations took the number of clinics from 14 in 1981 to just 1 in 2012.

The Louisiana law, which was signed by Gov. Bobby Jindal in 2014, requires physicians who perform abortions to have “active admitting privileges at a hospital that is located not further than thirty miles from the location at which the abortion in performed.” Texas’ omnibus anti-abortion law from 2013, which is getting a hearing in front of the Supreme Court next week, included a similar provision. And the 2013 admitting privileges law in Mississippi was responsible for closing all but one clinic in the state.

The Center for Reproductive Rights, along with Louisiana women’s health care providers, announced their intent to fight Wednesday’s court decision, which overturned a lower court ruling to block the law, by appealing to the Supreme Court.

“Today’s ruling thrusts Louisiana into a reproductive health care crisis, where women will face limited safe and legal options when they’ve made the decision to end a pregnancy,” said Nancy Northup, president and CEO of the Center for Reproductive Rights. “We will immediately seek emergency relief from the Supreme Court so these clinics are able to reopen and continue serving the women of Louisiana.”

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

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Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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