The Mississippi law that would forbid ending pregnancies after the detection of a fetal heartbeat has been blocked by a federal judge.
Judge Carlton Reeves said in a preliminary injunction that the law “threatens immediate harm to women’s rights”, and especially when you consider that most women don’t even know they’re pregnant until after six weeks.
He wrote that allowing the law to take effect would make the clinic to stop providing most of the care that comes with ending a pregnancy, and the law prevents a woman’s free choice, which is central to personal dignity and autonomy.
Pro-choice supporters argue that the law disrupts a woman’s right to seek to end her pregnancy prior to viability, so it collides with Supreme Court precedent.
None of the laws, which have been introduced by Republican-led states, have gone into effect in 2019, so the decision triggered protests across the country on Tuesday, the same day Reeves heard arguments in Mississippi.
Many critics worry that since Justice Brett Kavanaugh took the seat of swing vote retired Justice Anthony Kennedy, the Supreme Court might move back on its landmark decision Roe V. Wade.
The “heartbeat laws”, as they are called by supporters, or, more correctly, “six-week bans” have been introduced in 15 states this year, and passed in Georgia, Mississippi, Kentucky, and Ohio.
Alabama took it one step further and passed a near total ban on ending pregnancies earlier this month, to which the American Civil Liberties Union and Planned Parenthood filed a lawsuit against.