Study: States have enacted 51 new abortion restrictions in 2015

Study: States have enacted 51 new abortion restrictions in 2015
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States have enacted 51 new abortion restrictions so far this year, according to a new report from the pro-abortion rights Guttmacher Institute. 

There have been more new restrictions so far this year than all of last year, the report finds, while noting that there usually are more new laws in odd-numbered years, when more legislatures are in session. 

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The number for this year is below the 70 new restrictions enacted in 2013, the highest mark of the past few decades. 

The restrictions come amid particular attention to a Texas law requiring abortion providers to have admitting privileges at a local hospital, and imposing other requirements that would, in effect, force some clinics to close. 

The Supreme Court this week halted enforcement of the law while it considers whether to hear an appeal on it. 

Guttmacher says four states enacted similar types of restrictions this year, and five states either expanded or created waiting periods between when women receive counseling and when they can have an abortion. 

Two states passed laws that Guttmacher says could ban abortions as early as 14 weeks of pregnancy. Such a law in Kansas has been challenged in court. 

“Even though most action on these issues follows recent trends, some states have charted some new directions that may well serve as models for other states going forward,” the report warns.