Federal Judge Blocks Indiana Abortion Ultrasound Mandate
A memo sent to the parties involved Tuesday by Judge Howard Sachs of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri said he's also made a decision to block a law requiring that abortion providers meet the same regulations as outpatient surgical centers.
In his statement, Daleiden said the public "knows the real criminals are Planned Parenthood and their business partners like StemExpress and DV Biologics - now being prosecuted in California - who have harvested and sold aborted baby body parts for profit for years in direct violation of state and federal law".
The ultrasound requirement took effect last July. Every woman that is counseled for abortion care receives information about all options.
The new ultrasound mandate, combined with these two previously existing requirements, places an undue burden on a woman's right to choose to have an abortion and is therefore unconstitutional, according to the group's lawsuit.
"The court concluded, by granting the preliminary injunction, that PPINK was likely to ultimately succeed in its claim that the law was unconstitutional as an undue burden on a woman's constitutional rights".
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IN is far from the only state to have such a requirement.
Similarly, Murkowski said prior to consideration of the AHCA bill that contained the provision to defund the abortion business, "I will not vote to deny Alaskans access to the health services that Planned Parenthood provides".
Making positive moves on the pro-choice front, the IN ultrasound mandate was blocked because U.S. District Judge Tanya Walton Pratt ruled that the requirement is likely unconstitutional and creates "clearly undue" burdens on women - especially low-income women.
The injunction memo comes amid a week of debate in the Missouri legislature about two abortion-related bills: one restricting the donation of fetal tissue after an abortion and another wiping out local laws governing crisis pregnancy centers that promote alternatives to abortion.
"The new ultrasound law creates significant financial and other burdens on PPINK and its patients, particularly on low-income women in IN who face lengthy travel to one of PPINK's now only six health centers that can offer and informed-consent appointment", Pratt wrote in her 53-page order. This was especially burdensome for low-income women, for whom the costs of travel, childcare, and missed wages were simply too much. These are facilities that offer surgeries and procedures outside of a hospital, according to the Ambulatory Surgery Center Association's website.
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No compelling evidence was found that having ultrasounds the day before having an abortion, rather than on the same day, would cause women to change their minds about the abortion, The Associated Press reported.
"It is simply not a reasonable assumption, given the absence of specific evidence on the question, that further time to deliberate on an [ultrasound] image that has almost no impact at the time, would create a meaningfully stronger impact after 18 hours", the judge wrote.
The order temporarily blocks the provision while the litigation challenging it proceeds.
Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill said in a statement that his office is considering the next steps in the case.
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