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Federal Judge Stops New Indiana Abortion Restrictions From Taking Effect


Planned Parenthood and the ACLU sued over three parts of the new law, including its two most significant provisions.

The first of those bans abortions performed solely because of a fetus’ potential disability, sex or race. The state argues that provision prevents discrimination.

But federal judge Tanya Walton Pratt says it clearly violates a right first established by the Supreme Court in 1973 – a woman’s right to terminate a pregnancy before viability.

The judge also blocked language that would have required abortion providers to tell women about that selective abortion ban.

The other major provision requires medical facilities, including abortion clinics, to bury or cremate fetal remains. The state says that’s to ensure the dignity of human life. Pratt says that issue is harder to balance. But she says it will cause harm to Planned Parenthood in the form of increased costs that could be passed on to patients -- and that the Supreme Court holds that a fetus is not a person.

Indiana University is suing over a separate part of the law unaffected by Thursday’s ruling. That issue involves buying, selling or receiving fetal tissue.

Brandon Smith is excited to be working for public radio in Indiana. He has previously worked in public radio as a reporter and anchor in mid-Missouri for KBIA Radio out of Columbia. Prior to that, he worked for WSPY Radio in Plano, Illinois as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. His first job in radio was in another state capitol, in Jefferson City, Missouri, as a reporter for three radio stations around Missouri. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.
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