A federal judge ruled Alabama’s abortion clinic law unconstitutional on Monday as it would place an undue burden on women seeking an abortion.
The law required doctors at clinics to have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals and would have meant the closure of three of the state’s five abortion clinics, making it quite difficult for women to get an abortion in-state.
“The resulting unavailability of abortion in these three cities would impose significant obstacles, burdens, and costs for women across Alabama,” U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson wrote in his opinion, The Associated Press reports.
The judge noted that several doctors at the three clinics lived outside the state, making it difficult to gain admitting privileges. Thompson also noted that local doctors would also be hesitant to provide abortions as the South is known to resort to violent measures against clinics and those who work there.
According to Reuters, Alabama’s Gov. Robert Bentley said he was saddened by the news.
“Abortion is a fundamental assault on the sanctity of innocent human life, and I believe it should only be done as a last possible effort to save the life of the mother,” the Republican governor said. Attorney General Luther Strange said the state would appeal.
States across the United States have been passing restrictive laws for abortions and so far some have been struck down, while others have gone into effect. Mississippi’s law was struck down last week, along with Kansas and Wisconsin’s.
Laws in Missouri, Utah, Tennessee and North Dakota and Texas have gone into effect, though a judge began hearing arguments in the last state.