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Judge blocks Missouri 8-week abortion ban

A federal judge on Tuesday blocked a Missouri ban...

Posted: Aug 27, 2019 2:39 PM
Updated: Aug 27, 2019 8:15 PM

A federal judge on Tuesday blocked a Missouri ban on abortions after eight weeks from going into effect.

'The various sections specifying prohibitions on abortions at various weeks prior to viability cannot be allowed to go into effect on August 28, as scheduled,' writes US District Judge Howard Sachs in an 11-page opinion.

'However formulated, the legislation on its face conflicts with the Supreme Court ruling that neither legislative or judicial limits on abortion can be measured by specified weeks or development of a fetus; instead, 'viability' is the sole test for a State's authority to prohibit abortions where there is no maternal health issue,' Sachs wrote.

Tuesday's ruling comes after two other federal judges blocked similar abortion restrictions in Arkansas and Ohio earlier this summer, as a slew of state laws looking to challenge Roe v. Wade, the 1973 landmark ruling legalizing abortion nationwide, make their way through the courts.

The Missouri law in question would penalize medical professionals who perform abortions after eight weeks into a pregnancy -- before many women know that they are pregnant, and well before the 24-week viability standard established by Roe -- with up to 15 years in prison. The law does not include exceptions for instances of rape or incest, only for instances of 'medical emergency,' such to prevent a pregnant woman's death or 'substantial and irreversible physical impairment.'

Alexis McGill Johnson, acting president and CEO of Planned Parenthood, praised the ruling and vowed to continue to fight the law in court.

'Today's decision blocks a harmful law that bans abortion before many know they're pregnant,' she wrote in a statement. 'What little abortion access in Missouri is left, will stay in place for the time being.'

'Let's be very clear: these severe restrictions on abortion access do nothing to address disability rights or discrimination,' Johnson added. 'They only stigmatize abortion and shame the people who seek that care.'

Republican Gov. Mike Parson praised the court decision to uphold sections of the law preventing abortions based on sex, race or Down syndrome, which are separate from the eight-week ban struck down by the judge. He said the state would continue to argue its case on the ban.

'We sent a strong message that Missouri stands for life, protection of women's health, and advocates for the unborn with the passage and signing of HB 126,' Parson said in a statement. 'We are encouraged that today's court ruling upheld the anti-discrimination provisions of the law, and we look forward to litigating the remaining issues.'

'As Governor, I am honored to lead a state that is committed to standing up for those without a voice and will continue to fight for the unborn,' he added.

Planned Parenthood, the American Civil Liberties Union and Paul, Weiss -- the law firm that argued in support of legalizing same-sex marriage in a landmark Supreme Court case -- filed the case last month.

The law would ban abortion outright should the Supreme Court overturn Roe. It also includes bans on abortion at 14, 18 and 20 weeks, which could go into effect if a court finds the eight-week ban invalid.

This story has been updated.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 308737

Reported Deaths: 7139
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto20931250
Hinds19961410
Harrison17562303
Rankin13369277
Jackson13156243
Madison9950212
Lee9890170
Jones8310161
Forrest7542148
Lauderdale7221237
Lowndes6289144
Lamar613384
Lafayette6072117
Washington5291133
Bolivar4776129
Oktibbeha457197
Panola4458103
Pearl River4437141
Warren4299119
Marshall4286102
Pontotoc417572
Monroe4062132
Union404675
Neshoba4005176
Lincoln3886109
Hancock373385
Leflore3471124
Sunflower331589
Tate325384
Pike3215105
Scott311472
Yazoo305069
Alcorn299465
Itawamba297877
Copiah293965
Coahoma290479
Simpson289586
Tippah285168
Prentiss276659
Marion266279
Leake261773
Wayne261541
Grenada256484
Covington255280
Adams246982
Newton245761
George238547
Winston226081
Tishomingo222567
Jasper220048
Attala213673
Chickasaw205457
Holmes187172
Clay183254
Stone179733
Clarke177776
Tallahatchie176140
Calhoun165431
Yalobusha160136
Smith159334
Walthall131043
Greene129633
Lawrence126623
Noxubee126534
Montgomery125742
Perry125238
Carroll120926
Amite120741
Webster113832
Jefferson Davis105532
Tunica103225
Claiborne101330
Benton97525
Kemper95628
Humphreys94632
Franklin82923
Quitman78916
Choctaw73917
Wilkinson65128
Jefferson64828
Sharkey49817
Issaquena1686
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 521623

Reported Deaths: 10739
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson754061493
Mobile39067799
Madison34040496
Tuscaloosa25367444
Montgomery24019567
Shelby23186239
Baldwin20701302
Lee15589165
Calhoun14342311
Morgan14158271
Etowah13685346
Marshall11995220
Houston10404278
Elmore10011200
Limestone9852147
Cullman9503189
St. Clair9463234
Lauderdale9265228
DeKalb8757181
Talladega8115171
Walker7139275
Jackson6756110
Autauga6750103
Blount6519134
Colbert6229130
Coffee5424113
Dale4772111
Russell430038
Franklin420782
Chilton4101109
Covington4061114
Tallapoosa3907146
Escambia390174
Dallas3525149
Chambers3514122
Clarke347060
Marion3072100
Pike306176
Lawrence295995
Winston273172
Bibb256059
Marengo248361
Geneva246075
Pickens233259
Barbour226455
Hale218575
Butler212967
Fayette209460
Henry188044
Cherokee182644
Randolph177241
Monroe172540
Washington165238
Macon155648
Clay150155
Crenshaw149457
Cleburne146741
Lamar139734
Lowndes136553
Wilcox124427
Bullock121640
Conecuh109428
Perry107626
Sumter103232
Coosa99428
Greene91434
Choctaw58824
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