Friday, November 24, 2017

Federal Court Strikes Texas' "Dismemberment Abortion" Ban

In Whole Woman's Health v. Paxton, (WD TX, Nov. 22, 2017), a Texas federal district court struck down Texas' ban on abortions performed through the standard dilation and evacuation procedure-- a procedure that the Texas law terms "dismemberment abortions."  The court said, in its 27-page opinion:
... [T]he Act prohibits the performance of an outpatient standard D&E abortion unless fetal demise occurs in utero before the fetus is removed from the woman. It is also undisputed that after approximately 15 weeks of pregnancy and before a fetus is viable, nationwide the most common second-trimester abortion is a standard D&E without inducing in utero fetal demise....
... [T]he State's legitimate interest in fetal life does not allow the imposition of an additional medical procedure on the standard D&E abortion  procedure not driven by medical necessity. Here the State's interest must give way to the woman's right. The Act does more than create a structural mechanism by which the State expresses profound respect for the unborn. The Act intervenes in the medical process of abortion prior to viability in an unduly burdensome manner.
Courthouse News reports on the decision. [Thanks to Scott Mange for the lead.]