Federal Judge Blocks Missouri’s 8-Week Abortion Ban From Taking Effect

The law has been put on hold pending litigation by Planned Parenthood and the ACLU.

Steve Pellegrino/Zuma

Fight disinformation. Get a daily recap of the facts that matter. Sign up for the free Mother Jones newsletter.

In May, Missouri passed a law banning abortion after eight weeks of gestation, with no exceptions for rape or incest. On Tuesday, a federal judge blocked the law a day before it was scheduled to go into effect.

Missouri’s law, which includes exceptions for medical emergencies, criminalizes physicians who perform abortions after eight weeks of gestation—before many women know they are pregnant. After Missouri’s Republican Gov. Mike Parson signed the bill into law, Planned Parenthood and the ACLU sued the state, calling its attempt to challenge Roe v. Wade unconstitutional. US District Judge Howard Sachs put the law on hold to allow the legal proceedings to unfold, the AP reports.

The judge allowed a ban on abortion based solely on race, gender, or Down Syndrome diagnosis to temporarily stay in effect, according to Buzzfeed. The state’s ban on abortions of non-viable pregnancies, however, violates Supreme Court precedent, according to Sach’s reasoning.

Abortion in Missouri is already illegal for fetuses that would be viable outside the womb, and the state has has only one abortion clinic. The lone clinic is under threat of closing pending thanks to a different court case about whether it has complied with requirements set by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. For now, though, obtaining an early-term abortion in Missouri is still legal.

HERE ARE THE FACTS:

Our fall fundraising drive is off to a rough start, and we very much need to raise $250,000 in the next couple of weeks. If you value the journalism you get from Mother Jones, please help us do it with a donation today.

As we wrote over the summer, traffic has been down at Mother Jones and a lot of sites with many people thinking news is less important now that Donald Trump is no longer president. But if you're reading this, you're not one of those people, and we're hoping we can rally support from folks like you who really get why our reporting matters right now. And that's how it's always worked: For 45 years now, a relatively small group of readers (compared to everyone we reach) who pitch in from time to time has allowed Mother Jones to do the type of journalism the moment demands and keep it free for everyone else.

Please pitch in with a donation during our fall fundraising drive if you can. We can't afford to come up short, and there's still a long way to go by November 5.

payment methods

ONE MORE QUICK THING:

Our fall fundraising drive is off to a rough start, and we very much need to raise $250,000 in the next couple of weeks. If you value the journalism you get from Mother Jones, please help us do it with a donation today.

As we wrote over the summer, traffic has been down at Mother Jones and a lot of sites with many people thinking news is less important now that Donald Trump is no longer president. But if you're reading this, you're not one of those people, and we're hoping we can rally support from folks like you who really get why our reporting matters right now. And that's how it's always worked: For 45 years now, a relatively small group of readers (compared to everyone we reach) who pitch in from time to time has allowed Mother Jones to do the type of journalism the moment demands and keep it free for everyone else.

Please pitch in with a donation during our fall fundraising drive if you can. We can't afford to come up short, and there's still a long way to go by November 5.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate