My observation has been that if there is anything that approaches a consensus in the US regarding abortion, it is that a late-term abortion is more morally problematic than an early term abortion. In a decision yesterday that reflects the ambivalent state of the nation with regards to abortion, the United Supreme Court upheld the 2003 Congressional legislation that banned a specific procedure, known medically as “intact dilation and extraction". While the ruling will have an impact on only a relatively small percentage of abortions, the decision will like have broader implications on abortion regulations in general.
The majority opinion, written by Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, makes note of the implication of abortion’s “ethical and moral concerns.” and indicates a change in the court’s balancing of the state vs. individual interests in the abortion debate.
For a more thorough reporting and analysis, check out the NY Times, Washington Post, and NPR reports on the decision.