‘Here We Go Again’: Federal Judge Blocks Mississippi Abortion Ban

UNITED STATES - JUNE 25: Protesters call for a vote on the NIFLA v. Becerra case outside of the Supreme Court on June 25, 2018. The case involves pro-life pregnancy centers and the requirement by California law to provide information on abortion. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call Group

A federal judge in Mississippi on Friday issued a preliminary injunction to prevent the state’s 6-week abortion ban from going into effect, after criticizing the law in court this week.

“Here we go again,” Judge Carlton Reeves’s order on Friday began. “Mississippi has passed another law banning abortions prior to viability.”

Reeves enjoined and then ruled unconstitutional a separate 15-week ban just a few months ago, and said earlier this week that the Republican-controlled state legislature’s even more restrictive six-week ban, which had no exceptions for victims of rape or incest, “smacks of defiance to this court.

The judge blasted the new law in his Friday order.

“S.B. 2116 threatens immediate harm to women’s rights, especially considering most women do not seek abortion services until after 6 weeks,” Reeves wrote, adding that the law would force the only clinic in the state “to stop providing most abortion care.”

“By banning abortions after the detection of a fetal heartbeat, S.B. 2116 prevents a woman’s free choice, which is central to personal dignity and autonomy,” he continued.

Republican lawmakers in Mississippi likely have their eyes set not on Reeves but the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, where an appeal of Reeves’ ruling on the 15-week ban is currently ongoing.

Read the order below:

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