Court of Appeals Rules that Arkansas Abortion Restrictions Can Take Effect

Baby In Womb

A federal appeals court has removed an injunction blocking four Arkansas abortion regulations from going into effect. The 8th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled last week that the 2017 Arkansas laws can take effect later this month. A district judge had previously blocked the rules after the ACLU and Center for Reproductive Rights brought a legal challenge. The laws include a ban on sex-selection abortions, a ban on dismemberment abortions, and regulations on the preservation and disposition of fetal tissue.


The 8th Circuit ruled that the district judge should reexamine the case in light of the recent Supreme Court decision in June Medical Services v. Russo. Although that decision struck down Louisiana abortion clinic regulations, the concurrent opinion from Chief Justice John Roberts stated that states have “wide discretion to pass legislation in areas where there is medical and scientific uncertainty.” 


Barring further legal challenges, the Arkansas laws will take effect on August 28.

August 14, 2020 - 2:45pm

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