PHOENIX (AP) — Arizona may impose a near-complete ban on abortion that has been blocked for nearly 50 years, a judge ruled Friday, meaning clinics across the state must avoid filing criminal charges against doctors. procedures have to be stopped. and other medical workers.
An injunction has long blocked the enforcement of a law on the books, since before Arizona became the state, which bans nearly all abortions. It is only if there is a threat to the life of the woman.
The ruling also means that people seeking an abortion will have to move to another state to obtain one.
The decision is likely to be appealed.
Pima County Superior Court Judge Kelly Johnson’s decision came more than a month after she heard arguments on Republican Attorney General Mark Branovich’s request to lift the injunction. This came into force shortly after the US Supreme Court’s 1973 decision in the Rowe v. Wade case, which held that women had a constitutional right to an abortion.
On June 24, the High Court overturned the row, saying states can regulate abortion as they wish.
As legislatures and courts have acted, what is allowed in each state has shifted. Abortion at any time during pregnancy is banned in 12 Republican-led states.
In another state, Wisconsin, clinics have stopped providing abortions amid litigation over whether the 1849 ban is in effect. Georgia banned abortion once fetal heart activity was further detected, and Florida and Utah banned Kickstarter after 15 and 18 weeks of gestation, respectively.
This is a breaking news update. Below is an earlier story from AP.
PHOENIX (AP) — A new Arizona law banning abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy goes into effect Saturday as a judge weighs a request to allow pre-state law that would prevent nearly all abortions from being implemented. stops.
The 15-week legislation passed by the Republican-controlled Legislature and signed by GOP Gov. Signed by Doug Ducey, it was enacted in the hope that the US Supreme Court would withdraw limits on abortion rules. This mirrors a Mississippi law that the High Court was considering at the time that cut nearly nine weeks off the previous limit.
Instead, conservative judges, who have a majority in the court, completely reversed the Roe v. Wade, 1973 decision that held that women had a constitutional right to terminate a pregnancy. Now states are allowed to make all abortions illegal, and a dozen have while others have implemented new limits.
Anti-abortion foes celebrate the passage of the 15-week ban. Ducey, who signed every abortion ban bill that reached her desk in her eight years in office, also supported the 15-week ban.
“In Arizona, we know that there is immeasurable value in every life – including forebears,” Ducey said in his March 30 signature letter. “I believe it is the responsibility of each state to protect them.”
On the same day she signed the abortion ban, Ducey also approved legislation banning transgender women and girls from playing on women’s sports teams. It also takes effect on Saturday, along with most other laws passed this year.
Meanwhile, abortion providers await a decision from a judge in Tucson who is considering Republican Attorney General Mark Branovich’s request to block enforcement of the pre-state law since Rowe’s decision.
Judge Kelly Johnson said during a hearing last month that she would rule on September 20 at the earliest. Planned Parenthood and its Arizona allies urged her not to allow the old law to apply against medical providers and instead allow other abortion restrictions to be passed as Roe was reversed to stand.
Ducey has a similar take. He has argued that the 15-week ban he signed takes precedence over the older law, first adopted by the 1st Arizona Territorial Legislature in 1864 as part of a set of laws known as the “Howell Code”. was enacted as
Despite his conflict with Branovich over whether the new or old laws take precedence, Ducey did not send his in-house lawyers to argue his position at the August 19 hearing.
The 15-week law would only affect about 5% of abortions performed in the state, according to data from the last three annual reports compiled by the Arizona Department of Health Services. During that time the state averaged only 13,000 abortions per year.
But combined with a law passed last year banning abortion because the fetus has a genetic abnormality such as Down syndrome, the restrictions add, Dr. DeShawn Taylor, who provides abortion services at her clinic in Glendale.
“People forget that these percentages are real people,” Taylor said in an interview on Tuesday. “Arizona’s population continues to grow … and that five to 10% is a lot of people who either have to stay pregnant or find a means to move out of state to get the care they need.”
Taylor is an OB-GYN who runs Desert Star Family Planning, where she provides a full range of reproductive health care and is one of the few clinics to provide second trimester abortions. Like almost all abortion providers in the state, she outlawed both surgical and drug abortions after Roe was ousted by the Supreme Court.
Providers pointed to ex-state and a “personality” law banning abortions for genetic reasons that they fear could lead to prosecution for closure. But after a federal judge on July 11 blocked that provision because he said it was unconstitutionally vague, Taylor and other providers resumed services.
But it was difficult because his staff still feared prosecution, she said. Taylor said the nurse had quit a long time before Roe turned over because she was worried about the upcoming decision.
Her medical assistant also left, and another nurse who had helped with abortions for three years was initially reluctant to resume the procedures out of unfounded concerns that she could be criminally charged.
“It took a while to convince the guy that I didn’t even want to go to jail,” Taylor said. “Why am I doing something illegal and asking him to do it?”
In the end, the nurse agreed to help, but only with non-surgical abortions, Taylor said.
On Monday, Taylor said she had her last pre-abortion consultation because she hoped a verdict could come on Tuesday. Arizona requires ultrasounds and counseling at least a day before an abortion is performed, and she didn’t want patients to have to put off a procedure.
After a turbulent summer, Taylor said on Friday that she has closed her clinic for the rest of the month.
This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.