Louisiana high court leaves abortion bans on hold

The Louisiana Supreme Court decided not to hear a request from the attorney general to overturn a lower court's restraining order that blocks the abortion ban.
Published: Jul. 6, 2022 at 6:19 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 6, 2022 at 6:51 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - The Louisiana State Supreme Court has chosen not to get involved at this stage in the attorney general’s attempt to block a restraining order against the state’s abortion law.

Conservative justice Jeff Hughes asserted that it would be premature for the court to get involved and this matter should be decided in the lower courts.

Attorney General Jeff Landry filed the request asking for the court to block the enforcement of a temporary restraining order that stalls the state’s “trigger” ban on abortions, which came into play after Roe v. Wade was overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court.

“The Louisiana Supreme Court is delaying the inevitable. Our Legislature fulfilled their constitutional duties, and now the judiciary must. It is disappointing that time is not immediate,” Landry said in a tweet.

The decision means abortions are still accessible in Louisiana until court matters are settled.

Justices William Crain and Jay McCallum disagreed with Hughes and Chief Justice John Weimer stepped aside from the case.

McCallum wrote that plaintiffs hadn’t shown that enforcing the laws before the case could be heard would cause “immediate irreparable injury,” so the hold should be dissolved.

Crain wrote that “these circumstances are at least as compelling as others” where the state’s highest court has stepped in.

“While whether these doctors will suffer irreparable harm by being prohibited from performing abortions is debatable, terminating alleged life during the period of the temporary restraining order is irreparable,” he wrote.

He also said the justices should step in now to analyze whether the laws were unconstitutionally vague.

Landry’s July 1 filing contended that abortion rights advocates who filed the suit “are willfully misreading clear terms in the law in an attempt to manufacture arguments that the statutes are unconstitutionally vague.”

Abortion rights supporters responded that the district court or a state appeal court needed to fully consider and rule before the case goes to the Louisiana Supreme Court.

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