Federal appeals court rules in favor of Missouri abortion restrictions

A federal appeals court on Monday ruled that the state of Missouri could enforce laws that abortion rights groups argue will curb access to the procedure.

The 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a 2017 ruling that blocked enforcement of the laws, which require doctors who perform abortions to be affiliated with hospitals and abortion clinics to be licensed as ambulatory surgical centers.

Planned Parenthood initially sued the state over the laws in 2016. 

They argue the requirements are burdensome and unnecessary, and will result in abortion clinics closing in Missouri. 

"Look no farther than Missouri to see what kind of harm courts can inflict on women's rights and freedoms," said Dawn Laguens, executive vice president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. 

"Despite a Supreme Court ruling striking down virtually identical restrictions in Texas, judges on the 8th Circuit continue to re-write the books on abortion access. Today's ruling threatens to eliminate abortion access at all but one health center in the state."

Laguens is referring to Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedtin which the Supreme Court ruled that the state of Texas could not place restrictions on the delivery of abortion services that create an "undue burden" for women.

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