Federal judge blocks Mississippi’s 15-week abortion ban
© WikiMedia (Brian Stansberry)

Federal judge blocks Mississippi’s 15-week abortion ban

A federal judge on Tuesday blocked Mississippi’s restrictive ban on abortion, ruling that it violates the Constitution.

The Gestation Age Act bans abortion after 15 weeks of gestation, except in the case of a medical emergency or a severe fetal abnormality. The law was signed by Republican Gov. Phil Bryant in March, but a court quickly placed a temporary block on it.

District Judge Carlton Reeves wrote that the “State chose to pass a law it knew was unconstitutional to endorse a decades-long campaign, fueled by national interest groups to ask the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade. … The record is clear: States may not ban abortions prior to viability.”

The Supreme Court has continually rejected a number of states’ attempts to restrict abortions to women 15 or fewer weeks pregnant, including North Dakota’s Fetal Heartbeat law that banned abortions at six weeks.

Reeves continued that the Mississippi Legislatures interest in women’s health is “pure gas-lighting.” He stated that while Mississippi’s leaders are proud to challenge Roe,they “choose not to lift a finger to address the tragedies lurking on the other side of the delivery room: our alarming infant and maternal mortality rate.”

Reeves acknowledged the anxiety and turmoil that is coupled with a women’s decision to terminate her pregnancy. “Respecting her autonomy demands that this statute be enjoined.”