Reproductive Health and Righs Groups to Hold Jan. 4th Teleconference as Supreme Court Considers Reviewing Federal Abortion Ban Case

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Court Expected to Make Decision on January 6
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WASHINGTON-The American Civil Liberties Union, the Center for Reproductive Rights, National Abortion Federation (NAF), and Planned Parenthood Federation of America will hold a January 4th teleconference for reporters to discuss upcoming action in the legal challenges to the Federal Abortion Ban.

On Friday, January 6, the Supreme Court is scheduled to consider whether to review Gonzales v. Carhart, the legal challenge to the ban brought by the Center for Reproductive Rights on behalf of Dr. LeRoy Carhart and other physicians. The public will be notified of any decision from the Court on Monday, January 9.

In 2003, the ACLU, the Center, NAF, and Planned Parenthood filed three separate lawsuits against the "Partial-Birth Abortion Ban of 2003" on behalf of physicians and women throughout the country. Medical experts in all three trials testified that the ban would prohibit abortions as early as 12 to 15 weeks in pregnancy, and would endanger women's health and safety by outlawing abortions that doctors say are safe and among the best to protect women's health. In all three cases, the district court declared the ban unconstitutional, citing the Supreme Court's decision in 2000 in Stenberg v. Carhart, a case filed by the Center, which struck down a similar Nebraska statute.

In July 2005, the Eighth Circuit affirmed the trial court's ruling in Gonzales v. Carhart, becoming the first appellate court to hold the law unconstitutional. In October 2005, NAF v. Gonzales was argued in the Second Circuit and Planned Parenthood v. Gonzales was argued in the Ninth, decisions are expected in both cases in the coming months.

Speakers will update reporters on each case and discuss the pending review of the ban by a newly constituted Supreme Court.

WHAT: Phone briefing on the Federal Abortion Ban

WHEN: Wednesday, January 4, 2006, at 11:00am EST

WHERE: Contact Ken Goldman at (703) 587-3226 or kgoldman@prochoice.org to RSVP and to receive call-in information.

WHO: Vicki Saporta, President and CEO, National Abortion Federation, NAF v. Gonzales

Janet Crepps, Staff Attorney, Center for Reproductive Rights, Gonzales v. Carhart

Eve Gartner, Senior Staff Attorney, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Planned Parenthood v. Gonzales

Talcott Camp, Deputy Director, ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project, NAF v. Gonzales

To learn more about all three cases, go to www.federalabortionban.org. ,