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Bad news for the GOP's war on women. A  U.S. District Court Judge has thrown out the North Dakota GOP's latest attempt to get around Roe vs Wade.

North Dakota abortion ban ruled unconstitutional

By Meredith Clark

A federal judge has struck down one of the strictest abortion laws in the country, ruling that a North Dakota ban on abortions after as early as six weeks is unconstitutional.

In his decision, U.S. District Court Judge Daniel Hovland wrote of the state’s push to end abortions after a month and a half, “The United States Supreme Court has spoken and has unequivocally said no state may deprive a woman of the choice to terminate her pregnancy at a point prior to viability.”

The law, which would have prohibited abortions after a fetal heartbeat can be detected, passed last year and was immediately challenged. The Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR) filed suit on behalf of the Red River Women’s Clinic, the only abortion provider in North Dakota. A judge blocked the law from going into effect in July of last year.

In a statement, Nancy Northup, the president and CEO of the Center for Reproductive Rights, called Wednesday’s decision a major victory for women throughout the Midwest.

“The court was correct to call this law exactly what it is: a blatant violation of the constitutional guarantees afforded to all women,” Northup said in a statement. “But women should not be forced to go to court, year after year in state after state, to protect their constitutional rights. We hope today’s decision, along with the long line of decisions striking down these attempts to choke off access to safe and legal abortion services in the U.S., sends a strong message to politicians across the country that our rights cannot be legislated away.”

North Dakota's Attorney General hasn't indicated if the state will appeal this ruling yet.
The battle over abortion rights in North Dakota is not over, though. The North Dakota Supreme Court is reviewing a law that would functionally end medication abortion, which could further burden women who live in rural areas many miles from comprehensive reproductive care.

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