Idaho Supreme Court Rules Strict Abortion Ban Can Take Effect

Idaho’s near-total abortion ban may go into effect at the end of August, while legal challenges to the restrictions are considered, the Idaho Supreme Court said in a ruling late Friday. .

Following the decisionthe ban is set to begin on August 25.

The Court made the ruling based on three lawsuits filed by a Planned Parenthood chapter and a local doctor this year to block three Idaho laws that were to come into effect if the U.S. Supreme Court were to strike down Roe v . Wade, which she did in June. The petitioners had asked the court not to enforce abortion restrictions until the lawsuits were settled.

The first lawsuit sought to end a law that would make it a crime to perform an abortion, although it allows doctors to cite rape, incest or an attempt to save a pregnant woman’s life as defense at trial. Another lawsuit sought to rein in a law that criminalizes abortions after six weeks of pregnancy. The chapter had also filed a lawsuit against a law that allows relatives of a fetus or embryo to sue the abortion provider and establishes a reward of at least $20,000, plus legal costs, within four years following an abortion.

Although other states have banned abortion at conception and instituted tough penalties for abortion providers, the federal government says Idaho’s law goes against federal health care guidelines. health when the health of a pregnant woman is in danger. The Justice Department took the rare step of filing its own lawsuit against the state in federal court and asked that the law be suspended. The lawsuit, the first federal lawsuit filed to try to protect abortion rights, is scheduled to be heard Aug. 22.

Idaho’s highest court merged the state’s three lawsuits into one. The petitioners initially argued that the laws were unconstitutional. When Roe was overthrown, they argued that the laws violated the Idaho Constitution and the Idaho Human Rights Act. But the court ruled that the laws could go into effect since the petitioners could not prove that their application would cause “irreparable harm”. The judges added that the petitioners failed to meet the “substantial likelihood of success” standard to overturn the laws.

“What the petitioners are asking this Court to ultimately do is declare a right to abortion under the Idaho Constitution when – on the face of it – there is none. “wrote Justice Robin Brody for the majority, along with Chief Justice Richard Bevan and Justice Gregory Moeller. . “In fact, before Roe announced a federal constitutional right to abortion in 1973, abortion was a longstanding criminal offense in Idaho.”

Two dissenting judges – Justices John Stegner and Colleen Zahn – said the laws should not be enforced until there is legal clarity.

“It’s been just over a month since the Supreme Court of the United States ignored 50 years of precedent and threw patients across the country into a world of chaos, fear and confusion,” Rebecca Gibron, Director Acting General of the Planned Parenthood Chapter who filed the suit, said in a press release. “The Idaho State Legislature has made it clear that this is the future it wants for its constituents, and today the court made its vision a reality.”

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