Constitutional Law

Judges in 2 states block abortion laws, and state-level litigation begins over bans on abortion

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After the U.S. Supreme Court, supporters of abortion rights are now taking their fight to the state courts. overturned Roe v. Wade Friday

Some supporters argue state constitutions protect abortion rights. Associated Press reports. Some people argue that abortion restrictions do not apply to them. Some argue that lawmakers in 13 states who passed anti-abortion trigger laws—which were to take effect if Roe is struck down—can’t bind current lawmakers. Some argue that the conditions for trigger laws not to take effect are not met.

According to the AP report, judges in Louisiana and Utah temporarily blocked Monday’s abortion bans. New York Times And Reuters.

“It’s all about the states from here on out,” said Jessie Hill, a professor at the Case Western Reserve University School of Law, in an interview with the New York Times. “We can fantasize about federal solutions to this issue or nationwide settlements of the abortion question, but I think that after Dobbs [v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization], I don’t see a lot of possibilities at the federal level.”

According to the New York Times, reproductive-rights supporters “are coalescing around a strategy of asking courts for temporary injunctions that at the very least can allow abortions to proceed in the short term.”

Already filed lawsuits include:

• In Louisiana, an abortion clinic and other plaintiffs argue that it’s unclear which of the state’s trigger laws are in effect and what conduct is banned. Robin Giarrusso, Orleans Parish Civil Court Judge, granted a temporary restraining orders in the case up to a July 8 hearing about the TRO. The Center for Reproductive Rights and Boies Schiller Flexner, local counsel Ellie Schilling represent the plaintiffs. (The AP, Reuters,, Giarrusso’s order, Boies Schiller Flexner press release)

• Planned Parenthood Association of Utah filed a lawsuit claiming that the state’s trigger law violates the state constitution. Andrew Stone, Third District Judge, issued Monday a temporary restraining or to block the law for 14-days. The Planned Parenthood Association of Utah, Zimmerman Booher, and the American Civil Liberties Union of Utah represent the Planned Parenthood Federation of America. (The AP, The Washington PostPress releases from Planned Parenthood here And hereThe lawsuit)

• In South Carolina, U.S. District Judge Mary Geiger Lewis allowed a blocked South Carolina abortion law to take effect. The law prohibits abortions once a fetal beat is detected. (The APSouth Carolina attorney General press release, the Lewis’ June 27 order)

• A lawsuit filed on behalf of Kentucky abortion clinics and a health care provider seeks to block a full abortion ban passed in 2019 and a six-week ban previously blocked by a federal court. The suit asserts that the Kentucky Constitution protects abortion rights. (ACLU press releaseThe lawsuit)

• In Florida, a lawsuit alleges that a law that bans abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy violates the state constitution. The suit was filed on behalf of abortion providers and health centers by the American Civil Liberties Union, the ACLU of Florida, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the Planned Parenthood Federation of America and Jenner & Block. A second lawsuit filed by a Jewish synagogue, Congregation L’Dor Va-Dor, makes a religious liberty argument. (The APPlanned Parenthood press releasePlanned Parenthood lawsuitThe New York Times)

• A lawsuit filed on behalf of abortion providers in Texas seeks to block an abortion ban passed before Roe. The suit was filed by the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, the ACLU of Texas, Morrison & Foerster, and Hayward. (ACLU press releaseThe June 27 lawsuit)

• A lawsuit filed on behalf of abortion providers in Idaho contends that the state’s trigger law banning abortion violates Idahoans’ right to privacy and equal protection under the Idaho Constitution. (Planned Parenthood) press releaseThe June 27 lawsuit)

• An abortion provider in Mississippi filed a lawsuit claiming that the state constitution protects a right to abortion. The lawsuit cites the 1998 Mississippi Supreme Court decision to support this argument. Pro-Choice Mississippi v. Fordice. (The Mississippi Free Press, WAPTThe June 27 lawsuit)

• The American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona and the Center for Reproductive Rights filed an emergency motion in an existing lawsuit over the state’s 15-week ban on abortion. The motion is designed to block a provision that requires the state interpret laws to give unborn children the rights they have. (The AP)

• A lawsuit filed in Michigan before the Dobbs The ruling stated that an abortion ban of 1931 violates the state constitution. May’s argument was accepted by a judge. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer stated that she is also filing suit against the law to stop it being implemented. (The AP, NPR)

• The Iowa Supreme Court ruled June 17 that the state constitution doesn’t protect a right to abortion. In a challenge to a state law that required a 24-hour wait before an abortive procedure, the court ruled. (CNN)

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