Federal judge expected to rule Tuesday on whether Missouri abortion law will take effect

by
August 27, 2019

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – A federal judge said he will issue a ruling Tuesday that will determine whether Missouri’s new abortion law banning abortions at or after eight weeks of pregnancy will take effect as scheduled this week.

During a court hearing on Monday, Planned Parenthood and the American Civil Liberties Union asked U.S. District Judge Howard Sachs to issue a temporary restraining order to stop the law from taking effect on Wednesday until a legal challenge against it is decided. Sachs told attorneys he had a draft of his written ruling ready, but that he wanted to consider Monday’s arguments before issuing it on Tuesday. He did not indicate how he would rule.

The law is scheduled to take effect Wednesday. It would also ban abortions based solely on race, sex or a diagnosis indicting the potential for Down syndrome.

Claudia Hammerman, an attorney for Planned Parenthood and the American Civil Liberties Union, argued that earlier abortion-related rulings from courts across the country, including the U.S. Supreme Court, make it clear the bans are unconstitutional because they address abortions before the fetus is considered viable outside the womb, which can be from 24 to 28 weeks.

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