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Iowa high court strikes down 72-hour waiting period for an abortion

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Iowa bill to ban abortion after six weeks becomes law

Iowa State Senator Rick Bertrand reacts after the Iowa ‘heartbeat bill” to ban abortions after six weeks is signed into law.

The Iowa Supreme Court on Friday blocked the state’s mandatory 72-hour waiting period before a woman to have an abortion.

“We conclude the Statute enacted by our legislature, while is an appropriate provision, against the due process and equal protection clauses of the Iowa Constitution, because the restrictions on women are not tailored to a compelling state interest,” chief justice Mark Cady wrote in the judgment.

Then-GOP Gov. Terry Branstad under the law in the past year, and various groups signed on, including the ACLU, to block later sued to enforce it. Iowa Statute was one of the most restrictive abortion access laws in the nation.

Iowa attorney General Jeffrey Thompson, who defended the right for the state, argued that the protection of unborn life is a state interest of the highest order. He said to stop the choice, a pregnancy is a fundamental right under the Iowa Constitution, and that the waiting time represents the time for the women to information about the procedure, the supply of abortion providers, including the opportunity to view an ultrasound or hear a fetal heartbeat.

Planned Parenthood argues that the court “should. the Supreme courts in many other States, have found that the right to abortion guaranteed greater protection than granted under the Federal Constitution” The organization said the Supreme court in 12 States had such laws.

A separate Iowa law is also challenged, which would bar abortions if a fetal heartbeat is detected, usually around six weeks of pregnancy. The law will be suspended until legal challenges to their constitutionality.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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