Judge Upholds Decision Blocking Indiana Abortion Restrictions. Says Women Have ‘Ability To Reason’

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Grace Carr Reporter
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Women in Indiana won’t have to get an ultrasound 18 hours prior to aborting after a judge upheld an injunction Wednesday barring Indiana’s law from taking effect.

The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Indiana’s law requiring women to get an ultrasound at least 18 hours before they have an abortion places an “undue burden” on women and insults a woman’s intellect, according to The Indianapolis Star.

“Women, like all humans, are intellectual creatures with the ability to reason, consider, ponder and challenge their own ideas and those of others,” Judge Ilana Rovner wrote in the ruling. “The usual manner in which we seek to persuade is by rhetoric not barriers.”

In addition to requiring doctors to perform ultrasounds on women who intend to abort, Indiana law states that only physicians can perform abortions, that women must receive counseling at least 18 hours prior to their abortion, and that one parent must provide written consent if the patient is under 18 years old. The state also requires all abortions after the first trimester be performed in a hospital or licensed surgical center.

“Many women will proceed with having an abortion without ever seeing the humanity of their unborn babies on display through ultrasound imaging,” Indiana Right to Life President Mike Fichter said in a statement lamenting the ruling, the IndyStar reported. “Abortion providers continue doing everything they can to block women from being fully informed prior to an abortion decision,” he added.

Others applauded the ruling as a win for women and their access to reproductive health care. “The ruling affirms that deeply personal decisions about abortion should be made by women in consultation with their doctors, not politicians pursuing an extreme ideological agenda,” ACLU of Indiana Executive Director Jane Henegar said. (RELATED: Abortion Groups Seek To Knock Down Virginia Restrictions With Lawsuit)

The ACLU of Indiana’s legal director, Ken Falk, also called the ruling “a victory for women.” Wednesday’s decision is “another repudiation of the unnecessary and unconstitutional attempts by Indiana politicians to interfere with women’s reproductive rights,” Folk said.

Wednesday’s ruling comes after Whole Women’s Health Alliance, All-Options Pregnancy Resource Center and Dr. Jeffrey Glazer filed a lawsuit in June against the state of Indiana, seeking to strike down its restrictions on abortion.

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