Why Krauthammer Doesn’t Get It

In his column today Charles Krauthammer defends the constitutionality of Judge Alito’s decision that would have required a woman to notify her husband before having an abortion. (The Supreme Court later ruled it constituted an “undue burden.”) Among Krauthammer’s arguments:

In 1991, Judge Samuel Alito was asked to rule in Planned Parenthood v. Casey on the constitutionality of Pennsylvania’s spousal notification requirement, Supreme Court precedents on abortion had held that “two-parent consent requirements” for a juvenile with “a judicial bypass option” do not constitute an “undue burden” and thus were constitutional. By any logic, therefore, spousal notification, which is far less burdensome, must also be constitutional…

Krauthammer and Alito can’t understand that there is a difference between the relationship parents have with their children and the relationship a husband has with his wife. Just because a system of notification is acceptable between a child and a parent does not mean it’s acceptable between a woman and her husband.

Krauthammer also notes that, under the provision in question, “The married woman just has to inform her husband. Even less than that. She just has to sign a form saying that she informed him. No one checks.” Translation: This isn’t anything a woman couldn’t work around by lying.