(INDIANAPOLIS) – Indiana will have to defend a new abortion law in court, for the fourth year in a row.
The American Civil Liberties Union-Indiana has sued to block the latest abortion restriction, a day after Governor Holcomb signed it into law. The law makes it a crime to use the dilation and evacuation, or D&E, abortion procedure, in which the fetus is taken apart. Doctors who perform it could face up to six years in prison.
D&E is used in almost all second-trimester abortions, primarily in cases of profound birth defects. Supporters call the procedure “barbaric.” But ACLU attorney Ken Falk says the ban is “the quintessential undue burden” on a woman’s right to an abortion. That’s the test the Supreme Court has said states must pass when enacting abortion laws. Falk says the alternative method of inducing labor poses unnecessary health risks, meaning the law would have the effect of unconstitutionally banning abortions after the first trimester.
Federal courts have struck down six Indiana abortion laws since 2011. The D&E law is scheduled to take effect July 1. Falk says similar laws in other states have been struck down already.
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