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Supreme Court allows enforcement of Wisconsin fetal protection law

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website] issued an order [text, PDF] Friday allowing enforcement of Wisconsin's fetal protection law. The law gives courts jurisdiction over an "unborn child" and "expectant mother" when the mother "habitually lacks self-control" in the use of alcohol and drugs "to a severe degree," creating a substantial risk to the health of the child. The district court ruling [text, PDF] had found that the law was overly vague and issued an injunction. The Supreme Court will hear an appeal of the case to decide a final outcome. Two justices said they would have kept the injunction in place pending the appeal.

Abortion in America continues to be one of the most contentious issues throughout many states in the Union. In June in the state of Ohio lawmakers voted [JURIST report] 24-9 in favor of a bill that would criminalize a common second trimester abortion procedure. The day prior the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upheld [JURIST report] a San Francisco ordinance on Tuesday that was implemented to halt deceptive advertising tactics employed by clinics opposed to abortion. Also in June the Supreme Court of Georgia barred doctors [JURIST report] from suing state over abortion law, holding that the state is immune from litigation unless it consents to being sued, rejecting a challenge to a 20-week abortion ban.

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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