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November 5, 2013

FEATURED BLOG

"Attorneys for Indiana Defend TRAP Law in Federal Court," Jessica Mason Pieklo, RH Reality Check: On Wednesday, Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller (R) asked a federal court "to uphold a new law designed to close the only abortion clinic in Lafayette and insisted efforts to curb access to abortion care in the state are necessary to protect patient safety," Mason Pieklo writes. Planned Parenthood and the American Civil Liberties Union have asked the court to block the law, which mandates that facilities that provide medication abortions "meet architectural requirements of stand-alone surgical clinics" and only applies to abortion clinics, not to physician offices that offer the same medication. Mason Pieklo explains that the state's "efforts to limit medication abortions by targeting clinics that administer the pills is the latest in a string of legislative attacks on abortion access," as well as "the latest in a string of lawsuits between Indiana and Planned Parenthood as conservatives in the state continue to single out the reproductive health-care provider for closure" (Mason Pieklo, RH Reality Check, 11/4).

What others are saying about state abortion restrictions:

~ "Wisconsin Lawmaker Seeks Change to 'Fetal Protection' Law," Teddy Wilson, RH Reality Check.

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"Supreme Court Rejects Challenge to Decision Striking Oklahoma Medication Abortion Ban," Mason Pieklo, RH Reality Check: "On Monday, the Supreme Court turned away a challenge to an Oklahoma law that effectively bans medication abortions, giving abortion rights activists a clear victory and taking off its docket one of two high-profile abortion rights cases this term," Mason Pieklo writes. She explains that the court's action "leaves in place last week's ruling striking the Oklahoma law as unconstitutional." She notes that the court did "not explain the justices' reasoning for dismissing the challenge, only that it was 'dismissed as improvidently granted,'" adding that "by declining to keep the case, the Supreme Court has, for now, signaled its unwillingness to look at state laws that ban specific abortion procedures that have been approved by the federal government" (Mason Pieklo, RH Reality Check, 11/4).

What others are saying about Oklahoma:

~ "Oklahoma's Extreme Parental Notification Law Goes Into Effect," Ali Tweedt, NARAL Pro-Choice America's "Blog for Choice."

~ "BREAKING: Supreme Court Dismisses Major Attack on Abortion Rights," Ian Millhiser, Center for American Progress' "ThinkProgress."

FEATURED BLOG

"Texas Abortion Providers File Emergency Petition With Supreme Court Over HB 2," Mason Pieklo, RH Reality Check: "[A]ttorneys for reproductive health-care providers in Texas [have] filed an emergency petition with the U.S. Supreme Court to reinstate an injunction granted by U.S. District Judge Lee Yeakel blocking a requirement that doctors who provide abortions obtain admitting privileges at local hospitals," Mason Pieklo writes. She explains that an appeals court's decision to lift the injunction means that "Texas officials could move forward enforcing the law, HB 2, which threatens to close approximately one-third of the abortion providers in the state." However, the appeals ruling "was not a decision on the merits of the law," meaning "the only court to rule on the constitutionality of those provisions has found them almost entirely unconstitutional" (Mason Pieklo, RH Reality Check, 11/4).

What others are saying about Texas:

~ "Fifth Circuit Reinstates Texas Anti-Choice Restrictions," Syreeta McFadden, Feministing.

~ "Abortion Providers in Texas Are Canceling Their Patients' Appointments: 'It Is a Sad and Dark Day,'" Tara Culp-Ressler, Center for American Progress' "ThinkProgress."