RELEASE: In Light of the Supreme Court’s June Medical Decision, New CAP Issue Brief Looks at State Threats to Abortion Access

Washington, D.C. — In June, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a Louisiana admitting privileges law for unconstitutionally infringing on access to abortion care in June Medical Services v. Russo. Accompanying the court’s majority opinion, Chief Justice John Roberts issued a concurring opinion in which he signaled his willingness to uphold future abortion restrictions that come before the court—an opinion that lower courts have already used to justify the implementation of abortion restrictions in Arkansas.

A new issue brief released from CAP’s Women’s Initiative looks at ongoing state efforts to restrict abortion access—including gestational bans, method bans, medically unnecessary requirements, parental involvement laws, reason bans, so-called “born-alive” bills, trigger bans, and Targeted Restriction of Abortion Provider (TRAP) laws—which could be used as a predicate for further legal challenges to the constitutional right to access abortion and make it harder to access essential reproductive health care during the COVID-19 pandemic. The brief also looks at what some forward-thinking states are doing to better realize the promise of Roe v. Wade as well as what state legislatures and the U.S. Congress should do to protect and expand access to abortion care.

“The Supreme Court left the door open to chipping away at abortion rights in June Medical. Unfortunately, many states are demonstrating that they’re more than willing to assist in this effort. State and federal lawmakers should be working to expand access to comprehensive and affordable health care—particularly for Black women and Latinas, who are more likely to face barriers to abortion care and are simultaneously disproportionately harmed by the coronavirus pandemic,” said Nora Ellmann, research associate for women’s health and rights at CAP.

Please click here to read “State Actions Undermining Abortion Rights in 2020” by Nora Ellmann.

For more information or to speak with an expert, please contact Colin Seeberger at or 202.741.6292.