Iowa High Court Blocks Abortion Waiting Period

Judge: No injunction for Iowa abortion waiting period

Clapman argued the mandatory 72-hour waiting period would create an undue burden on patients by forcing multiple appointments, noting low-income rural patients would struggle the most with such guidelines.

Branstad announced Friday that he'd sign the bill Tuesday despite arguments from opponents that expanding fireworks sales would lead to more injuries and property damage.

"This ruling means that dozens of women today are able to access the care they need", Suzanna de Baca, Planned Parenthood of the Heartland's CEO, said in a statement.

He said the measure, Senate File 471, would protect the unborn by banning abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy and empower women to make informed decisions by requiring ultrasounds of an unborn child and a 72-hour waiting period for abortions at any stage of pregnancy.

A Polk County District judge denied an emergency injunction that would have halted a mandatory 72-hour waiting period for abortions in Iowa.

This bill would make Iowa the sixth state to require a 72-hour waiting period, according to the Guttmacher Institute, a research group that supports abortion rights.

The ACLU affiliate brought the lawsuit challenging the law with Planned Parenthood of the Heartland.

Alice Clapman, a lawyer for the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, said 44 scheduled procedures will be prevented if Branstad signs the law as planned.

The abortion bill that Branstad said he'll sign was pushed through the Legislature over the opposition of most Democrats. A signing ceremony is slated for 8:30 a.m., at the state Capitol building.

"I think this is something that a lot of Iowans have been looking for for a long time", the governor said.

When asked earlier about efforts to block to law, Branstad noted that similar abortion restrictions have been upheld in other states.

According to the petition, the new law is one of the strictest requirements in the nation on women seeking an abortion.

But Iowa Solicitor General Jeffrey Thompson pointed to Planned Parenthood's business hours and scheduling as the problem, not the law itself, the AP reports.

The court's approval of an injunction Friday came shortly after Gov. Terry Branstad signed the measure into law. The state says these burdens are created by society and not the new law.

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