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A federal judge has ruled that the strict abortion bill that the Texas state legislature passed this summer is unconstitutional. It was supposed to go into effect Tuesday.
District Judge Lee Yeakel said Monday that the bill would not allow an abortion doctor to do what his best for the patient and it put unreasonable restrictions on where a woman could get an abortion, reports the Associated Press.
Planned Parenthood’s lawyers fought the bill, which earned significant attention nationally when Sen. Wendy Davis held up the bill for hours with a filibuster in June. However, the Texas House passed it in July, as did the Senate days later.
The bill stated that abortion providers had to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles of the clinic, a restriction that could have closed a third of abortion clinics in the state. Planned Parenthood attorneys also said that a requirement to follow the Food and Drug Administration’s original label for an abortion drug would would deny a patient modern medical practices.
According to the Austin Chronicle, Yeakel did keep the latter provision, noting that it didn’t “place such an obstacle, except when a physician finds such an abortion necessary, in appropriate medical judgment, for the preservation of the life or health of the mother.”
The AP notes that Yaekel’s ruling is final, not just an injunction to temporarily stop the law. That’s different from a similar law passed in Mississippi, which was also blocked by a judge. In that case, it is going to a trial that starts in March.