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SCOTUS leaves Texas abortion law alone, opening the door for stricter abortion laws nationwide

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By Jenny Goldsberry

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s abortion law, banning all abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected, or about six weeks. Their decision came just before midnight Wednesday.

Ruling 5-4, all liberal judges, Justice Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan, Stephen Breyer but also including John Roberts were in the minority. Sotomayor railed against the “flagrantly unconstitutional law” in her opinion. It took them roughly 72 hours to rule.

“The Court’s decision is stunning,” Sotomayor wrote. “A majority of Justices have opted to bury their heads in the sand.”

But the order had nothing to do with the constitutionality of the law. “In reaching this conclusion, we stress that we do not purport to resolve definitively any jurisdictional or substantive claim in the applicants’ lawsuit. In particular, this order is not based on any conclusion about the constitutionality of Texas’s law, and in no way limits other procedurally proper challenges to the Texas law, including in Texas state courts,” the order read. The majority opted to issue an order without signatures rather than write opinions on the matter.

Abbott celebrated his law going into effect Wednesday before he even knew the ruling from the Court. “Starting today, every unborn child with a heartbeat will be protected from the ravages of abortion,” Abbott tweeted. “Texas will always defend the right to life.”

Meanwhile, the plaintiff in this case, Whole Woman’s Health, tweeted that there is still “so much to do.”

“We. Are. Not. Going. Anywhere.,” their tweet read.

Whole Woman’s Health remained open and functioning outside the new law until midnight Wednesday.

You can follow Jenny Goldsberry on Twitter @jennyjournalism.

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Last surviving WW2 Medal of Honor recipient Woody Williams dies at 98

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On this Fourth of July we honor the last surviving Medal of Honor recipient from World War II. Marine veteran Hershel “Woody” Williams died Wednesday at 3:15 a.m. and was 98 years old. Williams died at the Huntington, West Virginia, Veterans Affairs hospital named after him, according to a statement from his foundation.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced Sunday that Williams will lie in honor at the U.S. Capitol.

The Marine Corps Times writes about the honorable veteran and his Medal:

Born in 1923 on a dairy farm in Quiet Dell, West Virginia, Williams was the youngest of 11 children, according to the Weirton, West Virginia, Daily Times.

Initially disqualified for being too short, Williams enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1943, according to his biography. The demolition sergeant landed on Iwo Jima on Feb. 21, 1945, with 1st Battalion, 21st Marine Regiment, 3rd Marine Division.

Two days later, on Feb. 23, 1945, he famously destroyed enemy emplacements with a flamethrower, going forward alone into machinegun fire, covered only by four riflemen.

His citation states, “he fought desperately for 4 hours under terrific enemy small-arms fire and repeatedly returned to his own lines to prepare demolition charges and obtain serviced flamethrowers,” before wiping out one enemy position after another.

On one occasion, he “daringly mounted a pillbox to insert the nozzle of his flamethrower through the air vent,” which killed all enemy occupants and silenced its gun.

Williams received the Medal of Honor from President Harry S. Truman at the White House in October 1945 for “conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty.”

 

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