Abortion, death penalty, religion: Late-night rulings show new alliances at Supreme Court

Late-night rulings that touched on abortion, the death penalty and religious rights provided new insight into the alliances on the reconstituted Supreme Court and showed that even when justices try to avoid controversy, controversy finds them.

The emergency actions announced late Thursday showed Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. siding with the court’s liberals — for now — in blocking a restrictive Louisiana abortion law and keeping the status quo in place.

The ruling provided the best evidence so far about the leanings of justices chosen by President Trump on the issue of abortion; both Justices Neil M. Gorsuch and Brett M. Kavanaugh would have allowed the law to go into effect.

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