Abortion rights activists outside the US Supreme Court, Washington, D.C., May 21, 2019 (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)


US District Judge Rebecca Grady Jennings has issued a temporary order blocking Kentucky’s restrictions on abortions.

The decision, made at the request of Planned Parenthood, allows it and another providers to resume the procedure.

The Kentucky law, passed by a Republican-led over Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear’s veto, bans abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy. There is an exception if a woman’s life is in danger, but none for rape or incest.

The law imposes limits on medication abortion; requires abortion providers to be certified by the state pharmacy board; and outlawing telemedicine for abortion pills.

The measures meant that Kentucky became the first US state with no provision for abortions. A requirement for the cremation or burial of fetal remains, an elaborate and medically unnecessary process, meant clinics had to hire many more staff and to find funeral homes willing to work with them.

Anticipating the legislation, Kentucky’s two providers had sent patients to neighboring Indiana and other surrounding states

ORIGINAL ENTRY: Kentucky and Florida are the latest US states to restrict abortions, banning the procedure after 15 weeks of pregnancy.

Kentucky’s ban, passed by the Republican-led legislature over the veto of Governor Andy Beshear, takes effect immediately. Florida’s ban, signed by Governor Ron DeSantis, takes effect in July.

Last autumn, Texas paved the way for GOP-led states to sharply limit the Supreme Court precedent set by Roe v. Wade in 1972, protecting a woman’s right to choose until fetal viability outside the womb, around 24 weeks of pregnancy.

Texas’s bar on abortion after about six weeks allowed some states to claim a “compromise” with a 15-week limit, as in Mississippi. Others are proposing their own version of the six-week Texas restriction, with Idaho’s set to take effect in mid-April.

The Supreme Court will finally rule on the Mississippi legislation this summer.

See also Supreme Court Allows Texas Near-Ban on Abortions

EA on Monocle 24 and BBC: Supreme Court to Overturn Roe v. Wade?; GOP Accepts Lauren Boebert’s Hate Politics

Twelve states have “trigger laws” for a complete abortion ban if Roe v. Wade is overturned. Republican legislators in Oklahoma are proposed a revised trigger so that a full ban is imposed, even if Roe is not fully overturned.

Republicans in several states are also seeking to ban medication abortions. Others are seeking requirements for in-person visits for abortion pills. Some GOP legislators have even proposed bills compelling abortion clinics to provide inaccurate information that patients can reverse their abortions if they change their minds after taking the first pill.