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LWV Responds to Supreme Court Decision Temporarily Blocking Idaho Abortion Law Conflicting with Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act (EMTALA)

Press Release / Last Updated:

WASHINGTON — Today, the League of Women Voters of the United States issued the following in response to the US Supreme Court’s decisions in United States v. Idaho and United States v. Moyle to decline ruling on the case and return it to the trial court for further proceedings. For now, this means Idaho’s abortion ban is invalidated to the extent it conflicts with federal law on emergency care. The Idaho law was challenged as conflicting with the federal Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act (EMTALA), which requires hospitals to treat and stabilize patients experiencing an emergency medical condition. For pregnant people, access to abortion care can be life-saving or necessary to prevent permanent bodily harm. LWV filed an amicus brief in the case. With today’s decision, the Idaho law remains on hold for now, protecting pregnant people's right to emergency abortion care: 

“The Court’s action today preserves for now protections under the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act (EMTALA) ensuring protection for those who may become pregnant seeking emergency medical treatment. But as noted by Justice Jackson in her dissent, this ruling is not a win, but a delay. Instead of deciding definitively whether a state law can conflict with EMTALA, the Court carelessly abandoned its duty. As a result, the Court wasted time, caused more confusion, and endangered lives.   

“Women and those who may become pregnant deserve access to quality health care, including abortion, and the privacy to make their own reproductive choices.  

“Even with today's reprieve, our right and access to reproductive care has been severely eroded in many states. Abortion will not and should not be left to the whim of state legislatures, particularly when people’s health and lives are at risk.   

“Reproductive health care is essential health care. The League of Women Voters stands with women and individuals who may become pregnant in the fight to protect reproductive freedom.” 

Learn more about this case at LWV’s Legal Center here: United States v. Idaho (consolidated with Moyle v. United States) | League of Women Voters ( 


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