Monday, July 30, 2018
July 26, 2018 (Indianapolis Star): Court says women have 'ability to reason' in upholding block on abortion waiting period, by Vic Ryckaert:
A three-member panel of the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday upheld an injunction blocking an Indiana law that requires women to undergo an ultrasound and wait 18 hours before seeking abortion care.
The panel found that the 18-hour waiting period imposes an "undue burden" on women seeking abortion care.
"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 51-page ruling. "The usual manner in which we seek to persuade is by rhetoric, not barriers."
Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill said he is reviewing the decision.
Opponents of access to safe and legal abortion blamed a rise in Indiana abortions last year, the first since 2009, on U.S. District Judge Tanya Walton Pratt's 2017 ruling that blocked the ultrasound requirement. The restriction was included in a state law passed in 2016 and signed into law by then-Governor Mike Pence.
The ACLU filed the case on behalf of Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky, arguing that an 18-hour wait would force those seeking abortion care to take two days off work and pay for additional travel or overnight lodging expenses.
“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,” Jane Henegar, executive director of the ACLU of Indiana, said in a statement.
ACLU of Indiana legal director Ken Falk described the ruling as "a victory for women and another repudiation of the unnecessary and unconstitutional attempts by Indiana politicians to interfere with women’s reproductive rights.”