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Judge halts Indiana abortion ban a week after it took effect

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Indianapolis (TN) — An Indiana judge on Thursday blocked the state’s abortion ban from going into effect, blocking the new law because abortion clinic operators argue it violates the state’s constitution.,

Owen County Judge Kelsey Hanlon issues preliminary injunction Against the ban imposed a week ago. The injunction was sought by abortion clinic operators, who argued in a lawsuit that the state’s constitution protects access to a medical procedure.


The ban was approved by the state’s Republican-dominated legislature. On August 5 and signed by GOP Gov. Eric Holcomb. This made Indiana the first state to implement strict abortion restrictions since the US Supreme Court in Roe v. Wade reversed federal abortion protections. in June.

The judge wrote “there is a reasonable likelihood that this significant restriction of personal autonomy would offend the freedoms guaranteed by the Indiana Constitution” and that the clinics would prevail in the trial. The order bars the state from enforcing the ban pending the trial on the merits of the case.

Republican State Attorney General Todd Rokita said in a statement: “We plan to appeal and continue to make the case for life in Indiana.”

Indiana bans 10-year-old rape victim after political storm who traveled from the neighboring state of Ohio to the state to terminate her pregnancy. The case attracted widespread attention when an Indianapolis doctor said the baby had come to Indiana because of Ohio’s “fetal palpitations” ban.

An Ohio judge has temporarily blocked that state’s lawIt signifies that he will allow abortions to continue until 20 weeks of gestation until after a court hearing scheduled for October 7.

Abortion at any point in pregnancy is now banned in 12 Republican-led states, along with Indiana. In another state, Wisconsin, clinics have stopped providing abortions amid litigation over whether the 1849 ban is in effect. Georgia bans abortion once fetal heart activity is detected, and Florida and Utah prohibit kicking after 15 and 18 weeks of gestation, respectively.

The Indiana ban, which includes limited exceptions, replaced state laws that generally prohibited abortions after the 20th week of pregnancy and strictly prohibited them after the 13th week.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana, which is representing abortion clinics, filed suit on August 31, arguing that the ban would “prohibit the overwhelming majority of abortions in Indiana and, as such, have a devastating and irreparable effect on plaintiffs.” And more importantly, their patients and clients.”

Indiana’s legal director of the ACLU Ken Falk, arguing before a judge on Monday, pointed to a declaration of rights in the state’s constitution, including “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” That includes the right to privacy and the right to make decisions about whether to have children.

The state attorney general’s office said the court should uphold the ban, arguing against it on the grounds of “novel, unwritten, historically unsupported abortion rights” in the state’s constitution.

“Nowhere in the constitutional text is abortion mentioned, and Indiana has prohibited or heavily regulated abortion by statute since 1835—before, during, and after the time when the Indiana Constitution of 1851 was drafted. was prepared, debated, and confirmed,” the office said in a court filing. ,

The question of whether the Indiana Constitution protects abortion rights is inconclusive.

A 2004 state appeals court ruling held that privacy is a core value under the state’s constitution that extends to all residents, including women seeking an abortion. But the Indiana Supreme Court later overruled that decision, without specifying whether such a right is included in the state’s constitution.

Hanlon, a Republican who was first elected as a judge in rural southern Indiana County in 2014, wrote that the Constitution of Indiana was comparable to the U.S. Constitution “affirming individual rights and interfering in individual matters of the legislative body.” more clear in its range of power”. ,

“There is a reasonable possibility that decisions about family planning, including decisions about terminating a pregnancy,” are protected by the state’s constitution, Hanlon wrote.

Planned Parenthood and other abortion clinic operators involved in the lawsuit said in a statement that they were “grateful that the court provided much-needed relief for patients, customers and providers but the fight is not over.”

“Indiana lawmakers have made it abundantly clear that this harm, this cruelty, was exactly what they had in mind when they (the abortion ban) were passed,” the statement said.

The Indiana abortion ban includes exceptions allowing abortion in cases of rape and incest before 10 weeks after fertilization; to protect the life and physical health of the mother; And if a fetus is diagnosed with a malignant anomaly.

The new law prohibited abortion clinics from providing abortion care of any kind, leaving such services entirely to hospitals or outpatient surgical centers owned by hospitals.


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