Politics

Planned Parenthood Sues Over Down Syndrome Abortion Ban

REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

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Rachel Stoltzfoos Staff Reporter

Planned Parenthood is suing over a new Indiana law banning women from aborting a fetus solely because it has a disability, or because it is a certain race, gender or nationality.

The law prohibits anyone from performing an abortion if that person “knows” the pregnant woman is getting the abortion solely because of the race, color, national origin, ancestry or sex of the fetus, or because the fetus has or may have Down syndrome or another disability. Such an abortion is “discriminatory,” the law states, and violation of the law could result in disciplinary sanctions and civil liability for wrongful death.

“Provides that the performance of an abortion solely because of the race, color, sex, disability, national origin, or ancestry of the fetus or a violation of certain statutes protecting the right of conscience regarding abortion is a discriminatory practice for purposes of the civil rights law,” a summary of the law states.

Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky filed a complaint Thursday asking a federal Indiana court overturn the law on the grounds it “imposes an undue burden on a woman’s right to choose an abortion” and is therefore unconstitutional, reported the Indy Star. The move was expected after Republican Gov. Mike Pence signed the bill into law in March.

“Gov. Pence has every confidence this law is constitutional,” Pence spokeswoman Kara Brooks said in a statement reported by the Indy Star. “We will work with the Attorney General to defend the law that enhances information expectant mothers receive and enhances protection for the unborn.”

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