Mississippi's New Abortion Law Is The Most Restrictive In The Nation

Women in Warsaw brandish coat hangers as they protest against laws to restrict abortion

Less than 24 hours after Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant signed the nation's most restrictive abortion ban into law, a judge has granted a temporary restraining order against the law in response to a suit filed by the Center for Reproductive Rights and Mississippi's sole abortion clinic. The measure is called the Gestational Age Act.

The owner of the state's only abortion clinic, Jackson Women's Health Organization, filed suit immediately after Bryant signed the bill, claiming it is unconstitutional.

Opponents of a new MS law banning most abortions after 15 weeks of gestation have filed a lawsuit.

The Supreme Court has ruled in the past against abortion laws involving babies who could not survive outside the womb, which would include the MS ban.

"We certainly think this bill is unconstitutional", said Katherine Klein, equality advocacy coordinator for the American Civil Liberties Union of Mississippi.

The 15-week ban 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. This is typically considered between 24 to 26 weeks gestation, the group said. He said the clinic does not perform abortions after 16 weeks of pregnancy, and March 28 would put her beyond that. There are only two exceptions to the ban: if an unborn child has health problems that would make him or her "incompatible with life" outside of the womb at full term, or if a pregnant woman's life or a "major bodily function" is threatened by continuing the pregnancy. The state's only abortion clinic and one of the physicians who practices there sued in federal court within an hour, arguing the law violates other federal court rulings saying a state can't restrict abortion before a child can survive on its own outside the womb.

In a lawsuit handled by the Center of Reproductive Rights, the Jackson Women's Health Organization says the measure is unconstitutional and should immediately be struck down.

Republican Gov. Phil Bryant signed a bill Monday, and it became law immediately.

"I was proud to sign House Bill 1510 this afternoon", Bryant said on Twitter. A federal judge on Tuesday (March 20) approved a temporary restraining order halting the MS bill banning abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy from going into effect.

Derzis said she was "delighted" Reeves temporarily blocked the law.

Reeves stated in court that the "ultimate question" is whether a state can ban abortion before viability. There are no exceptions for incidents of rape or incest. John Milkovich, would keep much of the state's existing abortion laws intact, including a sentence of up to 10 years of hard labor imprisonment and fines ranging between $10,000 to $100,000 for abortion providers.

There is just one abortion clinic left in the state of MS and it is located in the state capitol Jackson. While the Supreme Court ruled that banning abortion is illegal in its landmark decision, Roe v. Wade, Hood told Cincinnati.com that the bill could prompt the court to reconsider that decision.

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