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Anuncio de los artículos posteados el: 21/12/2016

21 Dic 2016 

Supreme Court strikes down Texas abortion law

In joining with the liberal justices, perennial swing vote Justice Anthony Kennedy helped deliver a victory to abortion rights activists and signaled the court's majority in their favor could continue regardless of the presidential election and the filling of the empty seat on the bench left by the death of conservative Justice Antonin Scalia.

Justice Stephen go Breyer wrote the majority opinion, which was joined in full by Kennedy. Breyer wrote that despite arguments that the restrictions were designed to protect women's health, the reality is that they merely amounted to burdening women who seek abortions.

"There was no significant health-related problem that the new law helped to cure," Breyer wrote. "We agree with the District Court that the surgical-center requirement, like the admitting-privileges requirement, provides few, if any, health benefits for women, poses a substantial obstacle to women seeking abortions, and constitutes an "undue burden" on their constitutional right to do so."

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg joined Breyer's opinion and wrote a brief concurring opinion, which focused on what she called women in "desperate circumstances."

"When a State severely limits access to safe and legal procedures, women in desperate circumstances may resort to unlicensed rogue practitioners, faute de mieux, at great risk to their health and safety," she wrote.

Political implications

The ruling will have reverberations on the presidential election, where the fate of the Supreme Court has been front-and-center after the death of Scalia in February. Senate Republicans have refused to act on President Barack Obama's nomination of Judge Merrick Garland, leaving the court with eight justices.

But Monday's ruling signals that even if Republicans were to name that replacement, the court still has a five-justice majority that could rule against abortion restrictions. And if Hillary Clinton were to win, the majority could even grow.

Hillary Clinton immediately praised the ruling.

"SCOTUS's decision is a victory for women in Texas and across America. Safe abortion should be a right--not just on paper, but in reality. -H"

President Barack Obama said he is "pleased" by the ruling.

"We remain strongly committed to the protection of women's health, including protecting a woman's access to safe, affordable health care and her right to determine her own future, the President said.

The court's decision has major implications for the future political battles over abortion beyond Texas.

Anti-abortion activists since Roe v. Wade have worked to pass a slew pop over to this site of laws across the country restricting abortions or making them more difficult, like the law struck down in Texas.

But Monday's ruling strengthened the premise of the 1992 case Planned Parenthood v Casey, sending a message to states that might pass such laws and lower courts that would uphold them that they have a high hurdle to prove they're constitutional. The Casey ruling said that states could impose restrictions as long as they didn't impose an undue burden on the woman.

"By clarifying exactly what the 'undue burden' test requires, I suspect the majority was hoping to dissuade states like Oklahoma from continuing to pass laws that so directly challenge the central premise of Roe v. Wade -- that the Constitution protects a pregnant woman's right to an abortion in a meaningful percentage of cases," said Steve Vladeck, CNN contributor and professor of law at American University Washington College of Law.

"In the process, the Court today has called into question everything from categorical bans on abortions to so-called 'fetal heartbeat' restrictions, and perhaps plenty of other laws in between," Vladeck added.

Already, both sides signaled they intend to keep fighting.

"Our fight is far from over," Clinton said in a statement. "In Texas and across the country, a woman's constitutional right to make her own health decisions is under attack. In the first three months of 2016, states introduced more than 400 measures restricting access to abortion."

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott decried the ruling. "The decision erodes States' lawmaking authority to safeguard the health and safety of women and subjects more innocent life to being lost," the Republican governor said in a statement. "Texas' goal is to protect innocent life, while ensuring the highest health and safety standards for women."

"I'm disappointed in the Court's decision. But our fight to protect women's health & promote life will not stop here," House Speaker Paul Ryan tweeted.

Kennedy the swing vote

All eyes were on Kennedy entering oral arguments -- a position the 79-year-old justice has often found himself in on the abortion issue.

Kennedy was one of the authors of Casey, but then disappointed supporters of abortion rights when he upheld the federal partial birth abortion ban in 2007. All eyes were on him for this case to see if he would take the opportunity to clarify Casey. Instead, as the most senior justice in the majority it was his choice to allow Breyer to write.

"The fact that Justice Kennedy gave away this opinion assignment and didn't write separately is striking," said Vladeck. "Kennedy has not only been the swing vote on abortion issues since he joined the Court in 1988, but he has written an opinion in virtually every major abortion case during that time, including the majority opinion in the Court's controversial 2007 decision upholding the federal ban on so-called 'partial-birth' abortions.

"It's not stunning that he sided with the liberals in striking down the Texas law in this case, but it is stunning that he didn't feel the need to explain why," Vladeck added.

Strong dissents from Thomas, Alito

Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito wrote dissents.

Thomas wrote a bitter dissent for himself, accusing the court of eroding the Constitution.

"The Court has simultaneously transformed judicially created rights like the right to abortion into preferred constitutional rights, while disfavoring many of the rights actually enumerated in the Constitution," Thomas wrote. "But our Constitution renounces the notion that some constitutional rights are more equal than others. ... A law either infringes a constitutional right, or not; there is no room for the judiciary to invent tolerable degrees of encroachment. Unless the Court abides by one set of rules to adjudicate constitutional rights, it will continue reducing constitutional law to policy-driven value judgments until the last shreds of its legitimacy disappear."



While Thomas would have upheld the laws, in Alito's dissent, joined by Chief Justice John Roberts, the justices would have sent the laws back to the lower courts to be decided after more evidence was presented.

Alito accused the justices in the majority of fabricating claims for the attorneys in the case.

"Determined to strike down two provisions of a new Texas abortion statute in all of their applications, the Court simply disregards basic rules that apply in all other cases," Alito wrote. "The Court favors petitioners with a victory that they did not have the audacity to seek."

Alito thought the two provisions of the law should have been dealt with separately and he condemns the majority for failing to do that analysis.

"If some applications are unconstitutional, the severability clause plainly requires that those applications be severed and that the rest be left intact....How can the Court possibly escape this painfully obvious conclusion. Its main argument is that it need not honor the severability provision because doing so would be too burdensome."

Carrie Severino, chief counsel and policy director of the Judicial Crisis Network and former clerk to Thomas, said the ruling "made clear that some constitutional rights are more equal than others." In a statement, she added that "by throwing out the regular legal rules in order to carry water for the abortion industry, the Court has further threatened its own legitimacy. It's no wonder the Supreme Court is suffering record levels of disapproval with the American people."

Impact of the law

There were two provisions of the law at issue. The first said that doctors have to have local admitting privileges at nearby hospitals, the second says that the clinics have to upgrade their facilities to hospital-like standards.



Critics say if the 2013 law, known as H.B. 2, is allowed to go into effect it could shutter all but a handful of clinics in a state with 5.4 million women of reproductive age.

Texas countered that the law was passed in response to the Kermit Gosnell scandal. The Pennsylvania man was convicted in 2013 of first-degree murder for killing babies that were born alive in his clinic.

State Solicitor General Scott Keller argued in court papers that if the court were to uphold the law, an abortion clinic "will remain open in each area where one will close, meaning that over 90% of Texas women of reproductive age will live within 150 miles of an open abortion clinic."

A federal appeals court upheld the Texas law in 2015, and last spring a majority of the Supreme Court voted to stay that ruling pending appeal. The four conservative justices at the time: John Roberts, along with Thomas, Alito and the late Justice Antonin Scalia, publicly noted that they would have denied the stay.

Scene outside the court

Protesters gathered outside the court in the hot, humid weather said they were ready to continue the abortion battle at the ballot box in November.

Ilyse Hogue, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, told CNN that the electoral fight would extend from the race for the White House, to the races in statehouses throughout the nation.

"I think it's a wake-up call to most Americans who value freedom, who value dignity that we need to get out and make our voices heard against a vocal minority, especially in November," Hogue said. "It's not just at the top of the ticket, but at the statehouse, too."

Teresa Stormes, 57, a CPA from Paragould, Arkansas, was visiting Washington with her children, Will Robbins, 18, and Ashley Robbins, 29. Even after a loss at the nation's highest court, people opposing abortion should turn to their local races and candidates, and their neighbors, she said.

"There's a lot of people on the planet and there's only a certain circle of people we can influence," Stormes said. "It's kind of like you have to go back to square one and be an example where you are and support life where you are."

Joe Aquilante, 42, a high school theology teacher from Philadelphia, said he had traveled down to Washington the previous weeks with other students and teachers from his school, expecting a ruling. When it was announced Monday, he said he had "mixed emotions."

"You know, I was saddened, but I'm emboldened as well because we've got to continue to fight," he said.

Fiorella Spalvieri, 53, a mental health administrator who was visiting Washington and walked over to the protest in support of pro-abortion rights groups, took a sober view of the ruling Monday: "I'm not sure the debate will ever be over."

CNN's Tom LoBianco contributed to this report.
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21 Dic 2016 

How to Bleed a Fuel Line

Every

summer is the same, when the weather gets warm we go fuel management systems for sale outside more to work and

play. The tools we use are powered by gasoline and diesel engines that need to

be restored to good working order before we can enjoy them or they will be

damaged by our lack of care. Being stored for winter involves draining all the

fuel and preparing the engine for storage. Restart the engine by refilling and

bleeding the fuel lines to expel trapped air that can stop an engine from running,



or even starting properly.

Things You Will NeedScrewdriver(s)



Crescent

wrench

Full

tank of fuel

Rags

Step 1

Open

the fuel tank and fill with approved fuel until the tank is full or until fuel

reaches the inlet tube of the tank. Diesel and gasoline tanks can vary in the

procedure to bleed a fuel line but a full tank of gasoline or diesel is

required. Diesel engines rely on gravity to keep some pressure in the lines

that require a tank to be full you bleed a fuel line.

Step 2

Remove

the air cleaner from the top of a gasoline fueled engine. After having run out

of gas, or been in storage for over sixty days, the way to refill the fuel line

is with the electronic ignition. Operating the gasoline fuel pump, the engine

must have a working battery and good charge to turn the engine over when asked

to bleed the fuel lines.

Step 3

Locate

the diesel fuel filter. Open the bleeder valve located here. Use the primer

pump or activate the fuel pump to push air of a diesel fuel line. Diesel

tractors and engines are more prone to having trapped air in the fuel lines

that feed the injectors. Different than a carbureted gasoline engine, a diesel

motor can perpetuate a problem that results in poor performance by not allowing

air to fully escape the line. Tighten the diesel fuel filter bleed valve and

move into the engine bay.

Step 4

The

carbureted gasoline engine can quickly bleed its own fuel lines simply by

attempting to start the engine without allowing it air to start. The best way

to accomplish this is to completely cover the opening into the carburetor with

your hand. Turn the ignition key to the start position and hold for three

seconds. The hand fuel management system for cars that covers the carburetor will eventually become wet with

fuel that the fuel pump is sending into the carburetor. Attempt to start the

engine three times, that's a total of nine seconds of fuel delivery. If the

engine becomes flooded with fuel making it unable to start after this

procedure, wait 20 minutes before attempting to start again. This will bleed a

gasoline fuel line.

Step 5

Diesel

engines that need the fuel lines that feed the injectors bled of air will need

to disconnect each injector fuel line and then prime the fuel system until fuel

is coming out of each injector line the same. Reconnect the injector lines and

restart the engine. This process will bleed a diesel fuel line.

Bleeding a Fuel Line is all about getting the air out of the lines. Keep valves and fuel lines free from extra air entering the lines by always maintaining the ends of hoses and bleeder valves at all times.

Tips & WarningsTIPS: A

rag to capture extra fuel will prevent you from possible fire and keep a

gasoline engine from flooding. Put a rag inside the carburetor when bleeding a

gasoline fuel line to soak up much of the fuel that would otherwise flood a gas

engine.

WARNING: If

you bleed a fuel line on a hot engine you risk an explosion and fire, possible

burning yourself, your assistant, and the house you live. See how silly that

sounds? Protect yourself from fire by working only on a cold engine and having

the proper fire extinguishers available in the work area.





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21 Dic 2016 

How to reduce domestic violence with legal assistance

We just recognized Domestic Violence Awareness month as a nation, but you wouldn't know it from the headlines streaming in.

After Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel repeatedly smashed his girlfriend's head against a window in October, the NFL recently announced that the star player won't face any disciplinary action. It's yet another high-profile example of how our culture sanctions domestic violence and a sign of how we're still failing to keep everyone in our communities safe.

Will we do any better in 2016--or will their own homes be the most dangerous place for American women next year, too?

The numbers are startling: Approximately 1.3 million women are physically assaulted by an intimate partner in the U.S. every year. Every day, three women die because of domestic violence. It's a life-or-death matter that requires urgent attention.

The causes of domestic violence are complex, and there is no single policy or program that can prevent it from happening. But there is one critical--and long overdue--step we can take that we know makes a great deal of difference in the lives of survivors: ensuring they have access to legal help, regardless of their ability to pay.



People are surprised when they learn that domestic violence survivors aren't guaranteed a lawyer. Only a small fraction of domestic violence incidents lead to criminal prosecutions, and while abusers facing criminal charges have a right to an attorney, survivors seeking protective orders or full custody of children are not, because these matters are considered civil.

Despite the high stakes, survivors who can't afford an attorney must face complicated legal challenges on their own. Without legal help, they often lose, making it impossible to escape dangerous situations and move forward with their lives.

Research shows that increasing access to civil legal aid is one of the most effective strategies to curb rates of domestic violence. A recent report from the Institute for Policy Integrity explains how legal advocacy can reduce domestic violence substantially--even more than access to shelters or counseling services--as much as 21 percent according to one study.

But how exactly does civil legal aid reduce domestic violence?

Legal help makes it easier for survivors to secure protective orders. While some offenders may be arrested and face criminal charges, most aren't, and the best available remedy for survivors is often a protective order from a civil court.

Getting a protective order in court from an abuser can be difficult or close to impossible if you're on your own, even though it can save lives. One study found that only 32 percent of survivors were able to get a protective order without an attorney, compared to 83 percent of survivors represented by an attorney who were able to get one.

Beyond securing protective orders, legal assistance can give survivors of abuse a second chance by providing the resources for them to leave their abusers and forge new, safe, and stable lives for themselves and their children. This is no easy task--abusers often maintain control over survivors' finances and even children. But we know that help from a legal aid lawyer can empower women to sever these damaging bonds and secure housing, public benefits, or much-needed spousal support, all of which require successfully navigating civil proceedings.

According to a new study by the Washington State Supreme Court, low-income survivors of abuse are twice as likely as other low-income people to experience critical civil challenges--including issues around child custody, health, or consumer finance. Civil legal aid provides survivors with the tools to get their lives back on track and gain independence.

Unfortunately, we simply don't put enough resources towards civil legal aid to support all survivors of domestic violence. According to the most recent census of the National Network to End Domestic Violence, barely half of domestic violence programs are able to provide an advocate to accompany domestic violence survivors to court, and only 11 percent of programs can offer legal representation.



We often think of emergency shelters and counseling services as an important resource for survivors of domestic violence to get back on their feet. But without legal assistance for survivors to deal with the critical issues involved in domestic violence, shelters and counseling are only stopgap measures that can't solve the underlying problem.

It's hard to overstate the difference we can make in the lives of survivors by providing them with the right resources. Take Theresa, a mother of six children. When her husband became abusive, she and her children had nowhere to go. She had no car, no job, and no money. But with the help of Iowa Legal Aid, she was able to break her abuser's hold over her--securing a dissolution of marriage and primary custody of her kids--and start a new life. With the spousal support Iowa Legal Aid secured for her, Theresa was able to finish her college degree and get a job as a teacher that allows her to provide for her family.

Civil legal aid organizations across the country have created innovative programs that reduce barriers for survivors to obtain legal help when they need it. Legal Aid of North Carolina, prosecutors, and local law enforcement joined together to create the Victims' Justice Center, a single place where survivors can report their crimes to police and receive the counsel of an attorney, so that they understand their options and can immediately take action.

Other civil legal aid programs are developing creative partnerships with court systems. Mid-Minnesota Legal Aid launched a promising pilot program in Stearns County that has produced the nation's first domestic violence court for repeat offenders. Impressively, there hasn't been a single intimate partner homicide in the county since the project began. Among survivors of repeated domestic violence offenses who received help through the program, 50 percent successfully left their abusers within a year.

We can and should do better by survivors of domestic violence, especially when the stakes are so high. Greater investment in civil legal aid would allow more people to improve their lives and escape dangerous situations. We might finally see this national epidemic begin to retreat, rather than continue to claim lives and hold back our communities.

Martha Bergmark is the Executive Director of Voices for Civil Justice.
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