The U.S. Supreme Court, without comment, has refused to take up a case launched by the abortion industry against Catholic bishops in Texas, leaving standing a lower court decision that told the abortionists to leave the religious leaders alone.
The abortionists had sued over a Texas law requiring burial or cremation for the bodies of aborted children. And although the Texas Catholic Conference of Bishops was not part of the case, the abortionists demanded access to the internal communications of the bishops because church leaders offered to allow the burial of aborted infants in their cemeteries instead of having the remains dumped in landfills.
The Supreme Court on Tuesday listed the case, Whole Woman’s Health et al v. Texas Conference of Bishops, among the cases it will not hear.
The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals previously refused to reconsider the case, after a court panel sided with the bishops. That ruling described the abortionists’ move as intimidation and an invasion of the church’s right to privacy.
“Thank goodness the Supreme Court saw this appeal for what it was: a nasty attempt to intimidate the bishops and force them to withdraw their offer to bury every child aborted in Texas,” said Eric Rassbach, senior counsel at Becket, which represented the Texas Catholic Conference of Bishops.
“Abortion groups may think the bishops ‘troublesome,’ but it is wrong to weaponize the law to stop the bishops from standing up for their beliefs.”
In 2016, Whole Woman’s Health, a Texas abortion business chain, sued over a state law that would require hospitals and abortion facilities to dispose of aborted human remains by burial or cremation, rather than in a landfill or the sewer, as was allowed.
The Texas Catholic Conference of Bishops, in adherence to Catholic doctrine on the sacredness of life, offered to provide burials to all unborn children who were aborted.
The abortionists then demanded “decades” of internal religious deliberations.
The 5th Circuit panel, however, protected the bishops, a decision that now has been affirmed by the Supreme Court.
The 5th Circuit panel wasted no effort on the abortionists’ demands, expending only a few words in announcing the decision.
The court’s statement said, “Treating the Petition for Rehearing En Banc as a Petition for Panel Rehearing, the petition for Panel Rehearing is denied.”
The abortionists’ demands came after the executive director of the bishops conference, Jennifer Allmon, voluntarily testified during administrative proceedings regarding the law that human remains should be disposed of with respect.
The 5th Circuit later said the demand on the bishops “looks like an act of intimidation” that would give the bishops’ conference the no-win choice of retreating from the discussion or defending its position.
The abortionists had offered to withdraw their demand if the conference executive would refuse to testify as a witness on behalf of the law.
The court said it looked like an effort “to retaliate against the people of faith for not only believe in the sanctity of human life – but also for wanting to do something about it.”
The conference has worked with hospitals and families for years to provide burials for the human remains.