Arkansas Bans Abortions After 12 Weeks’ Gestation

(Updated) Preliminary injunction will prevent ban from taking effect until courts decide on its constitutionality.

Update (May 21): The New York Times reports that a federal judge has "temporarily blocked enforcement of [the abortion ban in Arkansas] saying the law was likely to be declared unconstitutional."

Arkansas prohibits abortions after the twelfth week of pregnancy, making it the second-most restrictive state ban in the country. North Dakota, which bans the procedure after as little as six weeks, is also facing legal action against it.

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Update (Mar. 12): The New York Timesreports on how the ban has inspired pro-life activists in other states to pursue similar restrictions, but "traditional leaders of the anti-abortion movement, like National Right to Life and the Roman Catholic Church, think such laws will quickly be overturned in federal courts."

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Overriding governor's vetoes, the Arkansas state legislature voted to bar most abortions after 12 weeks' gestation—the point at which fetal heartbeats can be detected with abdominal ultrasounds.

"I feel grateful that people recognize that the abortion ...

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