Federal judge halts Alabama abortion law

Last Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson issued a block against the Alabama abortion ban, the Human Life Protection Act, prohibiting the bill to take place until the “courts resolve the case in full,” states CNN.

The Human Life Protection Act, a near-total ban on abortion, was one of the strictest reproductive bills in the country and set to put forth on November 15th. 

House Bill 314 penalizes doctors with a possible life sentence for conducting abortions with the exception of a fetus with a lethal anomaly or in cases in which the pregnancy would be a serious health risk to the mother. 

In his decision, Thompson argued that House Bill 314, “violates the right of an individual to privacy, to make choices central to personal dignity and autonomy.” adding that the ban “diminishes the capacity of women to act in society, and to make reproductive decisions…and that [the bill] defies the United States Constitution.”

The passage of the bill in May aimed to eventually overturn the Supreme Court’s decision during Roe v. Wade, in which legalized abortion, was a major triumph for the pro-choice movement.

However, after the signing of the bill, the ACLU of Alabama and the Planned Parenthood Foundation filed a lawsuit against the government opposing the law.

Alexis McGill Johnson, standing Planned Parenthood President, stated that state legislators in Alabama and elsewhere were “putting people’s health and lives at risk in their attempts to ban abortion outright in this country.”

Making Judge Thompson’s holt of the bill a momentary success for pro-life activists and organizations who opposed the new abortion restrictions.

Thompson’s decision to halt the ban from going into place prohibited the state laws restricting early-stage abortion of several other states as well including Kentucky, Georgia, and Arkansas. 

Federal judges in these states have banned abortions after the fetus’s heartbeat can be detected while other judges have prohibited abortion after the 18-week pregnancy mark.

Anticipated, supporters of the Alabama bill remain hopeful that their, “mission will be successful and appreciate the support of millions of citizens who support our effort to preserve unborn life,” commented Alabama Republican Representative Terri Collins.