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Policy: Law

Ginsburg: Court right to void clinic buffer zones

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Photo - Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in her Supreme Court chambers in Washington, Thursday, July 31, 2014.  Ginsburg says the Supreme Court won't duck the issue of same-sex marriage the next time a case comes to the court.  The 81-year-old Ginsburg said in an interview with The Associated Press on Thursday that she expects a same-sex marriage case to be heard and decided by June 2016, and possibly a year earlier.(AP Photo/Cliff Owen)
Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in her Supreme Court chambers in Washington, Thursday, July 31, 2014. Ginsburg says the Supreme Court won't duck the issue of same-sex marriage the next time a case comes to the court. The 81-year-old Ginsburg said in an interview with The Associated Press on Thursday that she expects a same-sex marriage case to be heard and decided by June 2016, and possibly a year earlier.(AP Photo/Cliff Owen)
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WASHINGTON (AP) — Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is defending a rare Supreme Court decision that puts her at odds with women's rights groups.

Ginsburg says the court's unanimous ruling in June that struck down the 35-foot, protest-free zone on sidewalks outside Massachusetts abortion clinics balances the rights of access to the clinics and speech of abortion opponents.

In an interview Thursday with The Associated Press, Ginsburg said the decision wasn't a compromise.

All the justices said the 35-foot buffer zone violated the Constitution. Ginsburg was among those who stuck down the buffer zone on narrower grounds than most of the more conservative justices wanted.

The Feminist Majority Foundation's president, Eleanor Smeal, says the decision emboldens more extreme violence, harassment and intimidation of women and health care providers in the name of free speech.

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