The 4 Best Lines From the Supreme Court Decision That Saved Abortion Rights in Texas

Stephen Breyer, top right, authored the majority opinion in the case. Ruth Bader Ginsburg, top left, wrote a concurring opinion.sippl/AP

The Supreme Court struck down key portions of a Texas law severely limiting access to abortion on Monday. The law, known as HB2, threatened to shutter dozens of clinics in the state. Here are the best lines from Justice Stephen Breyer’s majority opinion and Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s concurring opinion.

Breyer, in his polite and dry style, still managed to take some swipes at the state of Texas and its claim that the law would protect women’s health:

We have found nothing in Texas’ record evidence that shows that, compared to prior law…the new law advanced Texas’ legitimate interest in protecting women’s health.

More fundamentally, in the face of no threat to women’s health, Texas seeks to force women to travel long distances to get abortions in crammed-to-capacity superfacilities. Patients seeking these services are less likely to get the kind of individualized attention, serious conversation, and emotional support that doctors at less taxed facilities may have offered.

Ginsburg, making the same point, did not mince words:

It is beyond rational belief that H. B. 2 could genuinely protect the health of women, and certain that the law “would simply make it more difficult for them to obtain abortions.”

When a State severely limits access to safe and legal procedures, women in desperate circumstances may resort to unlicensed rogue practitioners, faute de mieux, at great risk to their health and safety.


We recently wrapped up the crowdfunding campaign for our ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project, and it was a smashing success. About 10,364 readers pitched in with donations averaging $45, and together they contributed about $467,374 toward our $500,000 goal.

That's amazing. We still have donations from letters we sent in the mail coming back to us, so we're on pace to hit—if not exceed—that goal. Thank you so much. We'll keep you posted here as the project ramps up, and you can join the hundreds of readers who have alerted us to corruption to dig into.

We Recommend


Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.


Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.


Share your feedback: We’re planning to launch a new version of the comments section. Help us test it.