US judge blocks Indiana 2nd trimester abortion procedure ban

A federal judge blocked an Indiana law that would ban a second-trimester abortion procedure on Friday, just days before the law was set to come into force.

Posted: Jun 28, 2019 6:09 PM

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A federal judge blocked an Indiana law that would ban a second-trimester abortion procedure on Friday, just days before the law was set to come into force.

The order putting the Indiana law on hold was released hours after the U.S. Supreme Court declined to revive a similar law in Alabama that sought to ban dilation and evacuation abortions.

The law passed by Indiana’s Republican-dominated Legislature this spring calls the procedure “dismemberment abortion.” It was set to become effective on July 1.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana sued on behalf of two doctors who perform dilation and evacuation abortions. Under the law, a doctor who performs the procedure could face a felony charge, punishable by up to six years in prison.

Indiana’s attorneys maintained the state had a valid role in limiting types of abortion procedures, citing a 2007 U.S. Supreme Court ruling that upheld a federal law banning the method.

ACLU attorneys argued that the ban would put a “substantial and unwarranted burden on women’s ability to obtain second-trimester, pre-viability abortions.”

In granting the preliminary injunction that blocked the law, U.S. District Judge Sarah Evans Barker wrote that it “prohibits physicians from utilizing the most common, safest, often most cost effective, and best understood method of second trimester abortion, requiring them instead to resort to alternatives that are medically riskier, more costly, less reliable, and in some instances simply unavailable, while accomplishing little more than expressing hostility towards the constitutionally fundamental right of women to control their own reproductive lives.”

The Indiana attorney general’s office didn’t immediately reply to telephone and email messages seeking comment.

The decision from Barker, who was nominated as a judge by President Ronald Reagan, comes just weeks after she allowed an abortion clinic to open in South Bend. The Indiana State Department of Health had denied the operator a clinic license, saying it had not provided requested safety documentation.

During a hearing this month, Barker questioned why the state would force women seeking a second-trimester abortion to undergo “highly risky” alternative procedures, such as prematurely inducing labor or injecting fatal drugs into the fetus.

Federal courts have blocked similar laws in several states, including Kentucky and Ohio this spring, but Indiana abortion opponents were hopeful an increasingly conservative U.S. Supreme Court could eventually uphold such bans.

The Indiana measure signed by Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb would make it illegal for doctors to use medical instruments such as clamps, forceps and scissors to remove a fetus from the womb except to save the pregnant woman’s life or prevent serious health risk.

Indiana Solicitor General Thomas said legislators wanted the ban “because they think the procedure is unethical.”

Indiana lawmakers didn’t go as far as those in Louisiana, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi and Ohio, where bills were enacted barring abortion once there’s a detectable fetal heartbeat, as early as the sixth week of pregnancy. Missouri’s governor signed a bill approving an eight-week ban on abortion, with exceptions only for medical emergencies. Alabama outlawed virtually all abortions, even in cases of rape or incest. Those bans haven’t taken effect, and all are expected to face legal challenges.

The U.S. Supreme Court in May rejected Indiana’s appeal of a lower court ruling that blocked the state’s ban on abortion based on gender, race or disability. The court, however, upheld a portion of the 2016 law signed by then-Gov. Mike Pence requiring burial or cremation of fetal remains after an abortion.

The dilation and evacuation procedure accounted for 27, or 0.35 percent, of the 7,778 abortions performed in Indiana during 2017, according to an Indiana State Department of Health report.

Terre Haute
Cloudy
58° wxIcon
Hi: 75° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 58°
Robinson
Cloudy
66° wxIcon
Hi: 77° Lo: 54°
Feels Like: 66°
Indianapolis
Cloudy
54° wxIcon
Hi: 68° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 54°
Rockville
Cloudy
55° wxIcon
Hi: 70° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 55°
Casey
Cloudy
56° wxIcon
Hi: 75° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 56°
Brazil
Cloudy
58° wxIcon
Hi: 74° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 58°
Marshall
Cloudy
58° wxIcon
Hi: 75° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 58°
Morning storms, then warm
WTHI Planner
WTHI Temps
WTHI Radar

Latest Video

Image

Sunday: Morning rain, then warm and breezy. High 73°

Image

haunted halls YMCA

Image

Stephanie's Kitchen

Image

Saturday Night: Cloudy, rain showers developing. Low: 50°

Image

ISU Football Victorious on Homecoming

Image

ISU Homecoming Parade

Image

Loogootee Volleyball Falls in the Regional Semi-Finals to Trinity Lutheran

Image

Dedication of Stephanie's Kitchen

Image

Residents cleanup the City of Clinton

Image

Linton Volleyball Advances to Regional Finals, but Comes Up Just Short

WTHI Events

 

Illinois Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 7 p.m. CT)

Cases: 1680908

Reported Deaths: 28023
CountyCasesDeaths
Cook63626111214
DuPage1086211379
Will915681128
Lake802871090
Kane68604874
Winnebago41222561
Madison40178598
St. Clair36326599
McHenry34856331
Champaign27087197
Peoria26991368
Sangamon25818287
McLean23073220
Tazewell20689331
Rock Island18919362
Kankakee17959249
Kendall16268114
Macon15344252
LaSalle15078287
Vermilion14453201
Adams13188152
DeKalb12201134
Williamson12091175
Whiteside8328183
Jackson810494
Boone796583
Coles7918125
Ogle759290
Grundy741386
Franklin7339115
Knox7321169
Clinton7136102
Macoupin6988106
Marion6935144
Henry666177
Effingham6639100
Jefferson6573143
Livingston599498
Stephenson587893
Woodford578492
Randolph5563100
Christian536682
Fulton527977
Monroe5258103
Morgan5088100
Logan495675
Montgomery492882
Lee479760
Bureau444291
Saline436169
Perry433975
Fayette432464
Iroquois422577
McDonough374861
Shelby349848
Jersey336953
Lawrence335533
Crawford333730
Douglas328437
Union307748
Wayne304863
White280833
Richland280157
Hancock274435
Clark266940
Cass266531
Pike265658
Edgar260649
Clay259854
Bond257525
Ford246059
Warren244866
Carroll237138
Moultrie236333
Johnson229732
Wabash217319
Jo Daviess216629
Massac216551
Mason214452
Washington212928
De Witt206530
Greene205640
Mercer205036
Piatt202814
Cumberland190126
Menard172513
Jasper161621
Marshall141721
Hamilton134222
Schuyler108810
Brown106610
Pulaski104612
Edwards104118
Stark81828
Gallatin7939
Alexander73212
Scott7126
Henderson70914
Calhoun6932
Hardin60916
Putnam5674
Pope5566
Unassigned1342433
Out of IL140

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 8 p.m. ET)

Cases: 1007681

Reported Deaths: 16470
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1355212121
Lake664101166
Allen57993801
Hamilton46350465
St. Joseph44397615
Elkhart35949510
Vanderburgh32251480
Tippecanoe27933260
Johnson25107445
Hendricks23897359
Porter22929365
Madison18748409
Clark18557252
Vigo17479303
Monroe15263200
LaPorte15173250
Delaware15073263
Howard14748290
Kosciusko12348148
Hancock11728176
Bartholomew11639180
Warrick11292189
Floyd11108215
Wayne10986253
Grant10082220
Morgan9472176
Boone8926115
Dubois8271131
Henry8229152
Dearborn822393
Noble8031106
Marshall7939135
Cass7546121
Lawrence7457171
Shelby7189119
Jackson698289
Gibson6597115
Harrison649192
Knox6421106
Huntington6395100
DeKalb632399
Montgomery6264111
Miami593398
Putnam581278
Clinton576171
Whitley565755
Steuben562576
Wabash5332104
Jasper532079
Jefferson511297
Ripley500586
Adams482576
Daviess4677114
Scott438974
Greene425196
Wells424888
Clay423360
White418764
Decatur4169102
Fayette406587
Jennings387361
Posey376644
Washington359151
LaGrange359078
Randolph3452100
Spencer340243
Fountain335760
Sullivan329452
Starke317171
Owen314771
Fulton312667
Orange293664
Jay284645
Franklin265643
Perry265452
Rush262432
Carroll261934
Vermillion258654
Parke231426
Pike229243
Tipton228159
Blackford193142
Pulaski183757
Crawford159823
Newton158348
Benton150617
Brown146747
Martin138719
Switzerland135011
Warren121116
Union107016
Ohio84613
Unassigned0540