A demonstration in favor of the right to abortion, in Madrid in 2019. David Fernández (EFE)
The Constitutional Court is going to endorse in its plenary session this Tuesday the 2010 abortion deadline law, almost 13 years after it was appealed by the PP.
The sentence —whose meaning was already known since last February, when the new progressive majority of the court stated so in a first vote— will be supported by the seven members of the progressive sector, but the four components of the sector will vote against conservative.
These three months have not served to achieve a more consensual ruling and the division of the court in this matter has remained.
Feijóo renounces resorting to the Constitutional that minors abort without parental consent
The 2010 law established the system of deadlines for women who decide to abort, and the constitutionality of this model —in which the woman can terminate her pregnancy in the first 14 weeks without having to plead anything or meet requirements— will now be recognized.
The objections of the conservative group refer mainly to their discrepancy with the fact that some requirements have been eliminated, such as informing the pregnant woman about the intervention to which she is going to undergo and about the existing alternatives, maternity assistance, if you decide not to carry it out.
The text of the sentence has been drafted by the vice president of the Constitutional Court, Inmaculada Montalbán, belonging to the progressive block, the majority in the court since its renewal last January.
Montalbán was in charge of the text after rejecting, in a vote in February, the first draft of the resolution, prepared by the conservative magistrate Enrique Arnaldo.
That first presentation already recognized the constitutionality of the system of deadlines, but it was not accepted by the progressive magistrates because it questioned the law in one aspect: that of the information that should be provided to the pregnant woman who wanted to terminate her pregnancy.
Arnaldo's proposal established that this information should be not only through written documentation but also verbally.
When rejecting that presentation by the conservative magistrate Arnaldo, the majority group of the court, the progressive group, stressed that with this sentence it was not only a matter of making clear the constitutional fit of the model of deadlines, but also recognizing abortion as a woman's right to that there was no hindrance or obstacle to be placed.
In this sense, the content of the sentence will go, according to court sources.
The conservative group, on the other hand, demanded that the Constitutional Court remain faithful to the doctrine of its 1985 ruling on the previous abortion law.
Enrique Arnaldo himself cited said precedent in his first draft, stressing that, according to this doctrine, "the
is not the holder of the right to life" but it is a "constitutionally protected legal right."
This led him to defend the duty to inform the pregnant woman through documentation and verbal explanations, even if she did not request it.
Court sources estimate that, given the importance of this ruling and the various nuances that may appear during the deliberation, it cannot be ruled out that the vote of 7 to 4 in favor of the new presentation also includes differentiated votes within each of the two blocks.
That is, the ruling will have 7 votes in favor (progressives) and 4 against (conservatives).
But the reasons of each magistrate to opt for one side or the other will be different and will probably give rise to complementary texts, according to these sources.
In the conservative block, according to the first debate in February, the most critical position with the 2010 law is that of magistrate Concepción Espejel.
And in the progressive group, it is considered highly probable that there will be a concurring vote —according to the support for the sentence,
During the first deliberation, Balaguer, a professor of Constitutional Law, was especially insistent on the need for the ruling to place the defense of women's rights at the center of its argument when deciding whether or not to continue with their pregnancy. .
In any case, the aforementioned sources consulted from the guarantee body ensure that this perspective has been configured as a basic pillar of the sentence that the vice president of the court, Inmaculada Montalbán, has drafted.
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