Proposition 4 Likely To Stand Up to Legal Challenges if Approved
Proposition 4, which would require parents to be notified before a minor can receive an abortion, appears to be "insulated" against legal challenges, the San Jose Mercury News reports.
Courts have upheld similar parental notification measures in other states because they included exceptions for medical emergencies and in cases where teens might have experienced abuse at home. Proposition 4 includes those exceptions.
The California Supreme Court in 1997 struck down a law that required parents to give consent before minors received an abortion. If Proposition 4 is approved, it would negate that decision and amend the state's constitution. According to the Mercury News, the "only option" for opponents would be to challenge the parental notification requirement in federal courts.
Joseph Grodin, a former California Supreme Court justice and law professor at Hastings College, said, "The U.S. Supreme Court has upheld similar statutes twice now. That doesn't look very promising."
Erwin Chemerinsky, dean of the University of California-Irvine law school, said, "It would be a very tough initiative to challenge on federal constitutional grounds" (Mintz, San Jose Mercury News, 10/3).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.