Federal Judge Blocks Blue State Ban On Abortion Pill Reversal Drug

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A federal judge blocked Colorado’s law banning clinics from providing women with a hormone that aims to reverse the abortion pill.

U.S. District Court Judge Daniel Domenico, a Trump appointee, granted a preliminary injunction Saturday, siding with a Catholic pro-life clinic that sued in April to block Colorado’s law as a violation of their First Amendment rights to free speech and free exercise of religion. Colorado’s Prohibiting Deceptive Practices at Anti-Abortion Centers” law bars clinics from offering progesterone to women after they have taken the first dose of the chemical abortion pill and regretted their decision.

“There is no question whether Section Three burdens Bella Health’s free exercise of religion,” the judge wrote. “It does. Bella Health considers it a religious obligation to provide treatment for pregnant mothers and to protect unborn life if the mother seeks to stop or reverse an abortion.”

The law threatens medical professionals with up to $20,000 fines for each violation and potentially losing their medical license, according to the lawsuit. (RELATED: Appeals Court Reverses Previous Ruling That Halted Idaho Abortion Ban)

The judge found that the law plainty targets religious expression, noting “crisis pregnancy centers” are “generally understood to be primarily run by Christians, as the members of the legislature explained.” He wrote that it “creates a religious gerrymander by targeting a subset of religiously motivated actors while failing to pursue the same alleged state interest
against those who provide, prescribe, and administer progesterone off-label for uses
other than abortion pill reversal.”

Bella Health and Wellness, the clinic behind the lawsuit, was founded by Catholic mother and daughter nurse practitioners Dede Chism and Abby Sinnett and serves more than 20,000 patients a month.

“It seems clear then, both given this legislative history and the bill’s text itself, that the legislature was aware that the burden of this prohibition would primarily fall on religious adherents,” Domenico wrote.

Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser declined to comment.

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