New York Times: Lawsuit Tries to Block New Arizona Abortion Law
By: Erik Eckholm
“A group of doctors and women’s rights advocates challenged Arizona’s new abortion limits in a federal lawsuit on Thursday, claiming that they violate the Constitution and pose a threat to women’s health.
The law, set to take effect on Aug. 2, prohibits abortions once 20 weeks have passed since a woman’s last menstrual period, which is about 18 weeks after fertilization. This is the earliest deadline set by any state and is weeks earlier than the threshold set by the Supreme Court. Thursday’s lawsuit, filed in United States District Court in Phoenix, might bring the first major courtroom test of pre-viability time limits that have recently been adopted in eight other states. They have become a prime tactic of the anti-abortion movement as it seeks to chip away at Roe v. Wade. ‘This is the most extreme example yet of these early-limit laws,’ said Nancy Northup, president of the Center for Reproductive Rights, which brought the lawsuit along with the American Civil Liberties Union and three doctors in Arizona who said the law would interfere with patient care. ‘This law also has a radically limited health exception that is completely unacceptable under the constitutional standard,’ Ms. Northup said. ‘A woman has to be in a dire emergency to have an abortion.’ Ms. Northup, of the Center for Reproductive Rights, said that the pre-viability time limits in Arizona and other states were clearly unconstitutional and that she expected the new case to set an important precedent. The plaintiffs are seeking a preliminary injunction to delay enforcement of the law and will appeal any adverse decisions, she said.” Read the complete article on the New York Times website >,