THE WASHINGTON TIMES – ALEX SWOYER
The Supreme Court said Monday it will hear a challenge to California’s law requiring pro-life pregnancy counseling centers to tell women about options for abortion, in a test of First Amendment free speech limits.
California’s Reproductive FACT Act requires pregnancy clinics to post a message directing customers to government offices for taxpayer-subsided abortions.
Two clinics, A Woman’s Friend Pregnancy Resource Clinic and Alternative Women’s Center, said they are pro-life and requiring them to tell women about abortion options violates their free speech protections.
“A Woman’s Friend’s position is that compelled speech is even more onerous than censorship,” the clinics’ petition to the high court read. “By forcing one to communicate a message contrary to conviction, compulsory speech constitutes an assault on freedom of conscience.”
The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the California law, but other federal appeals courts have invalidated similar laws.