The U.S. Supreme Court strikes down a Massachusetts law that mandates a protective buffer zone around abortion clinics to allow patients unimpeded access. Vanessa Johnston reports.
The Supreme Court ruled in favor of anti-abortion protesters in Massachusetts Thursday. A 2007 state law had banned them from standing on sidewalks within 35 feet of abortion clinics. But the Supreme Court ruled that it violated their freedom of speech rights. CEO of Concerned Women for America, Penny Nance, welcomed the decision. SOUNDBITE (English) CEO OF CONCERNED WOMEN FOR AMERICA, PENNY NANCE, SAYING: "We got a unanimous decision on our first amendment rights to peacefully offer information to women who are seeking an abortion." But Ilyse Hogue, President of NARAL Pro Choice America was troubled by the ruling. SOUNDBITE (English) PRESIDENT OF NARAL PRO CHOICE AMERICA, ILYSE HOGUE, SAYING: "I think the message the court sent is that women's safety is not a priority when balanced against other rights in this country." The so-called "buffer zone" law had been enacted partly in response to violent acts against abortion providers.