Courtesy of Associated Press

This week the US Supreme Court handed down two decisions that have major implications nationally.

The Supreme Court ruled to uphold President Trump’s counterterrorism related travel ban.

According to the Washington ExaminerChief Justice John Roberts noted that Trump has the executive authority to impose his ban to further specific national security interests.

 

He noted that because the ban had an absence of language regarding Islamic-identity, meaning the absence of a pernicious government intent, the court explained that “the entry suspension is an act that is well within executive authority and could have been taken by any other President.”

“On plaintiff’s reading,” Roberts notes, “… the entry restrictions in the Proclamation on North Korea (which plaintiffs do not challenge in this litigation) would also be unlawful. Nor would the President be permitted to suspend entry from particular foreign states in response to an epidemic confined to a single region, or a verified terrorist threat involving nationals of a specific foreign nation, or even if the United States were on the brink of war.”

The court recognizes Trump’s more extreme language towards Islam in relation to the travel ban. But while it quietly laments that presidents have “performed unevenly in living up to those inspiring words [of the founders documents and thoughts],” the court cannot use Trump’s language to override his constitutional authority: “we must consider not only the statements of a particular President, but also the authority of the Presidency itself.” The court’s position on this exigent concern is clear: Trump has the right to deny access to the United States on the national security grounds his proclamation identifies.

Trump v. Hawaii by Washington Examiner on Scribd

Gov. Phil Bryant had this to say on the Court’s decision,” I applaud the Court’s decision. This policy was implemented only on the grounds of ensuring national security. President Trump has made it clear that the safety of the American people comes first, and we should all be grateful for that.”

Supreme Court rules in favor of pro-life crisis pregnancy centers in NIFLA v. Bercerra. 

In a vote of 5-4 the Supreme Court argued that a California law which requires these centers to inform client about any free or low-cost abortion services (passed in 2015) is most likely a violation of free speech.

California’s Freedom, Accountability, Comprehensive Care and Transparency Act or FACT Act was passed in October of 2015 and requires pregnancy facilities to post a disclosure with information to immediate free or low-cost access to comprehensive family planning services that proved prenatal care or abortions for eligible women. The idea is that for the 700,000 some odd women who become pregnant in the state every year, and an estimated half of those pregnancies are unintended, the women know there are public programs available.

However, according to Fox News, the legislation triggered several lawsuits almost immediately. Even then, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals have rejected the arguments and upheld the law. In November the Supreme Court granted a formal order to only review the National Institute of Family and Life Advocates argument (NIFLA).

NIFLA argued, “Can the government impose and compel a faith-based ministry to proclaim a message that they are fundamentally opposed to with the risk of being fined or shut down?”

After the Court ruled in favor of the plaintiff, State Attorney General Xavier Becerra called the ruling “unfortunate”

“Today’s Court ruling is unfortunate, but our work to ensure that Californians receive accurate information about their healthcare options will continue,” Becerra continued.