Federal judge blocks new Texas abortion ban

Federal judge blocks new Texas abortion ban

A federal judge on Wednesday overturned a Texas ban on a second-trimester abortion procedure.

U.S. District Judge Lee Yeakel issued a temporary injunction in August to block the ban on “dilation and evacuation abortions,” which was passed in respond to a Supreme Court decision that blocked the state from restricting abortion. Abortion providers challenged the ban in a lawsuit.

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Wednesday’s ruling follows that injunction, sealing the deal on a major blow Texas Republicans, including the state’s governor, Greg Abbott.

Abortion rights have been a contentious issue in Texas, where lawmakers have made attempts to block funding for Planned Parenthood and shuttered more than half of the state’s abortion clinics.

Yeakel’s ruling said that the ban is “an inappropriate use of the State's regulatory power over the medical profession to bar certain medical procedures.”

“The State's valid interest in promoting respect for the life of the unborn, although legitimate, is not sufficient to justify such a substantial obstacle to the constitutionally protected right of a woman to terminate a pregnancy before fetal viability,” he wrote.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton will appeal the ruling, according to NPR.