State issues

Appeals court: Indiana abortion law signed by Mike Pence unconstitutional

Kaitlin Milliken

Indiana’s ban on “selective abortions,” which was signed into law in 2016 by then-Gov. Mike Pence (R), is unconstitutional, a federal appeals court ruled on Thursday. 

The law banned women from having abortions based on the gender, race or disability of the fetus. 

The law imposes an “undue burden” on a woman’s right to get an abortion, said the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago. 

{mosads}“The Supreme Court has been clear: the State may inform a woman’s decision before viability, but it cannot prohibit it,” Judge William Bauer wrote.

Similar bills passed or proposed in other states have specifically tried to ban abortions based on a Down syndrome diagnosis.

North Dakota, Louisiana and Ohio are the only states with these bans.
Anti-abortion groups argue the Indiana law and those like it protect discrimination of unborn children who are diagnosed with disabilities. 
“Americans United for Life is disappointed by Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals Judge William J. Bauer’s ruling that unborn children diagnosed with disabilities in the womb cannot be protected from fatal discrimination,” said Catherine Glenn Foster, president and CEO of Americans United for Life, an anti-abortion litigation group.
“Indiana and now-Vice President Mike Pence were pioneers in their defense of disabled children, and AUL will continue to fight for the day when all humans are welcomed in life and protected in law.” 
Abortion rights groups, however, argued such bans are just aimed at restricting access to abortion.
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