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The Roe v. Wade case challenged state criminal abortion laws in Texas and Georgia. The Supreme Court ruled that a woman's right to privacy extends to her decision to have an abortion, but this right is not absolute and must be balanced against the state's interest in protecting the potential life of the fetus. The lower court erred in upholding the Texas statutes, and the district court found them unconstitutional but abstained from granting injunctive relief. The Supreme Court can still review the case when properly appealed. The court dismissed a married couple's case for lack of standing. The court examined the history of abortion and criminal abortion laws before addressing the appellant's claim that Texas statutes violate a woman's right to choose to terminate her pregnancy.
The AMA and American Public Health Association established standards for abortion in 1970. The Supreme Court recognizes a woman's right to choose to terminate a pregnancy, but it may be limited by state interests. The Texas statute's infringement upon Roe's rights was found to be unnecessary to support a compelling state interest and went beyond any areas of compelling state interest. The Texas abortion statute is unconstitutional and violates the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. The right to terminate a pregnancy is protected by the Due Process Clause, which includes personal choice in matters of marriage and family life. The Court's decision to recognize a right to abortion under the Fourteenth Amendment is controversial.
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