Supreme Court Invalidates Massachusetts’ 35-Foot Buffer Zone Around Abortion Clinics

The Supreme Court unanimously held Massachusetts’s law establishing a 35-foot buffer zone around abortion clinics violates the First Amendment.  The decision appears to focus on the fact that the zone includes public sidewalks and roadways.

It’s not a sweeping decision.  It says states can pass laws that specifically insure access to clinics.  But states can’t more broadly restrict speech on public sidewalks and roads.

It also rejected the protestors’ argument that such restrictions are viewpoint-based and require strict scrutiny.

the Massachusetts law violates the First Amendment. This is a law that imposes a thirty-five-foot buffer zone around abortion clinics. – See more at: http://live.scotusblog.com/Event/Live_blog_of_opinions__June_26_2014#sthash.a99ZJFYQ.dpuf
the Massachusetts law violates the First Amendment. This is a law that imposes a thirty-five-foot buffer zone around abortion clinics. – See more at: http://live.scotusblog.com/Event/Live_blog_of_opinions__June_26_2014#sthash.a99ZJFYQ.dpuf
the Massachusetts law violates the First Amendment. This is a law that imposes a thirty-five-foot buffer zone around abortion clinics. – See more at: http://live.scotusblog.com/Event/Live_blog_of_opinions__June_26_2014#sthash.a99ZJFYQ.dpuf

About Joel Whitaker

Joel Whitaker is a long-time professional journalist (Tampa Bay Times, Wall Street Journal, Philadelphia Bulletin, Institutional Investor, executive newsletters) and Catholic convert. He is the RCIA coordinator for his parish.
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