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October 29, 2013

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"Arizona Attorneys Outline Why Roberts Court Should Revisit 'Roe,'" Jessica Mason Pieklo, RH Reality Check: "On Thursday, attorneys for the State of Arizona filed a petition for review with the Supreme Court in the case of Horne v. Isaacson, a challenge of the state's 20-week abortion ban," which is "a direct challenge to a central component of Roe v. Wade that holds states may not ban abortion pre-viability," according to Mason Pieklo. She notes that "the state's attorneys ground their legal challenge in a political strategy developed in the fight over 'partial-birth abortion' bans" in order "[t]o set up the direct challenge to Roe and the fetal viability standard." Mason Pieklo says that these attorneys have spent "most of their focus pivoting the framing of the constitutionality of abortion access away from the fundamental rights of a pregnant person and to the power of the state to regulate reproduction in the name of potential fetal life." She argues, "Simply put, states are looking for a way to significantly expand their police powers and see fetal pain bans as one avenue to do so" (Mason Pieklo, RH Reality Check, 10/25).

"Everything You Need To Know About the Texas Abortion Law Battle," Sean Sullivan, Washington Post 's "The Fix": "The fight over abortion laws moved back into the national spotlight on Monday when a federal judge blocked key parts of a controversial antiabortion law [HB 2] in Texas," Sullivan writes. He explains that "U.S. District Judge Lee Yeakel blocked two key parts of [the law]: A requirement that abortion doctors have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles of their clinic and another one that mandates abortions must take place in surgical centers." He also notes that the law has become an issue in the gubernatorial race, as Republican front-runner Attorney General Greg Abbott will lead the appeal, while challenger state Sen. Wendy Davis (D) "became a national figure" for her attempts to block HB 2 from being passed. Sullivan writes, "Until the appeal process is done and the last word has been said on this case, we don't know the ultimate impact," concluding, "For now, it's a victory for abortion rights providers in Texas and all of their defenders and allies around the country" (Sullivan, "The Fix," Washington Post, 10/28).

What others are saying about Texas:

~ "Two Reasons Why That Texas Abortion Decision is Nothing for the Pro-Choice Community To Celebrate," Ian Millhiser, Center for American Progress' "ThinkProgress."

~ "Ted Cruz Continues Fight for Texas Anti-Abortion Law Ruled Unconstitutional," Shadee Ashtari, Huffington Post blogs.

~ "Federal Judge Declares Hospital Admitting Privileges Provision of Texas Abortion Law Unconstitutional," Andrea Grimes, RH Reality Check.

 "Since Ohio Is Forcing Abortion Clinics Out of Business, More Women Are Leaving the State To Get Care," Culp-Ressler, Center for American Progress' "ThinkProgress": "[A]bortion access in some red states may now be even worse than it was before Roe v. Wade legalized the procedure in 1973," Culp-Ressler writes, noting, "State-level restrictions are forcing women to drive farther to get to a clinic and make multiple trips back to that clinic." For example, she writes that the Northland Family Center in Westland, Mich., has reported a rapid increase in the "number of out-of-state patients," with up to 50% of their patients coming from Ohio, where the American Civil Liberties Union is challenging a law that has forced some abortion clinics to close and threatening others. Culp-Ressler writes that a similar pattern has occurred in Maryland as "surrounding states like Pennsylvania and Virginia continue to impose tighter regulations on abortion." However, she writes, "For many individuals -- especially the low-income women who don't have the flexibility to take off work or the means to pay for childcare or transportation -- [the distance is] too much to surmount" (Culp-Ressler, "ThinkProgress," Center for American Progress, 10/25).

What others are saying about abortion restrictions:

~ "Centers for Disease Control Data Do Not Support Anti-Choicers' 'Born Alive' Claims," Sharona Coutts, RH Reality Check.

~ "A Lesson From Virginia: Attacking Women's Health is Not Only Bad Policy, It's Bad Politics," Cecile Richards, Huffington Post blogs.

~ "Alabama Anti-Choice Activists Request Even More Stringent Abortion Regulations," Teddy Wilson, RH Reality Check.

~ "How Many Abortions Does it Take to Become an Abortion Provider?" Robin Marty, Care2.

~ "When Is Abortion Murder? The Push for 'Personhood' Makes it Unclear," Marty, Care2.

~ "Arguments To Be Heard Wednesday in Lawsuit Over Iowa Telemedicine Abortion Ban," Mason Pieklo, RH Reality Check.