Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Fourth Circuit en banc upholds Virginia's partial-birth abortion statute by 6-5 vote

Today in Richmond Medical Center v. Herring, the Fourth Circuit en banc upheld the Virginia law on partial-birth "infanticide," with the six including Niemeyer, Chief Judge Williams, Wilkinson, Shedd, Duncan, Agee, and the five including Motz, Michael, Gregory, King, and Traxler. The opinion writers were Niemeyer and Michael. Earlier, the District Court and the panel of the Court had ruled that the statute was unconstitutional.

The case was argued back in October, 2008. And, if the case was argued in October 2009, with one or more of the Obama administration's nominees to the Fourth Circuit on the court, the opposite result would have been most likely.

Speaking of the Fourth Circuit, I might yet roll up to the Greenbriar for part of the Judicial Conference, which is this week, at least for Saturday morning's remarks by the Chief Justice.