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Judge Blocks Enforcement of Missouri Abortion Law

In a win for reproductive rights advocates, federal Circuit Court Judge Charles Atwell on Monday issued a preliminary injunction barring the enforcement of a state law allowing civil suits to be brought against anyone who “intentionally cause[s], aid[s]or assist[s]” in a minor obtaining an abortion without parental or judicial consent. Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri filed a lawsuit challenging the law in October. Monday’s injunction extends Atwell’s previous stay on the law, at which time he said that the new law “likely violated constitutional rights to free speech and due process and could cause irreparable harm to Planned Parenthood and its patients,” reports the Associated Press.

Eve Gartner, lawyer for Planned Parenthood, argued in October that the law could be variously interpreted to allow lawsuits against anyone who advised pregnant teenagers about their options.

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Sources:

Associated Press, 11/8/05; Kaiser 10/31/05, 11/9/05