Judge Blocks Mississippi's Strict New Abortion Law

Temporary ruling will set up bigger legal showdown over 15-week ban
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Mar 20, 2018 12:23 PM CDT
Judge Blocks Mississippi's Strict New Abortion Law
A vehicle passes by the entrance to the Jackson Women's Health Organization clinic in Jackson, Miss., Thursday, March 8, 2018. The facility is the state's only abortion clinic.   (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)

A federal judge has temporarily blocked a new Mississippi law that bans abortion after 15 weeks, the most restrictive abortion law in the United States. US District Judge Carlton Reeves on Tuesday granted a temporary restraining order requested by the state's only abortion clinic, per the AP. Dr. Sacheen Carr-Ellis of the Jackson Women's Health Organization said in court papers filed Monday that a woman 15 weeks or more pregnant was scheduled for a Tuesday afternoon abortion at the clinic.

The law and responding challenge set up a confrontation sought by abortion opponents, who are hoping federal courts will ultimately prohibit abortions before a fetus is viable. Current federal law does not. Republican Gov. Phil Bryant signed House Bill 1510 on Monday, and it became law immediately—until Tuesday's ruling.

(Read more Mississippi stories.)

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