Planned Parenthood announced today that it's filed a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of two abortion bills signed into law by Governor Jan Brewer earlier this year that make it more difficult for Arizona women to end a pregnancy.
Aside from forcing abortion doctors to offer patients the opportunity to look at ultrasound images of the fetus -- a move to basically try to scare women out of having an abortion -- one of the bills, HB 2416 (which can be read here), also adds stiffer regulations to the early abortion-by-pill method of ending a pregnancy. The law would subject the medication used in the procedure to the same regulations as surgical abortion -- even though all the procedure entails is handing someone a pill.
The law makes it so only doctors can administer the pill, as opposed to nurse practitioners or other capable medical professionals.
Doing so, officials from Planned Parenthood say, would block access of early-term abortions to women living in rural communities where abortion doctors are in short supply.
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By preventing early-term abortions by over-regulating the pill, the group says, it will lead to more late-term, potentially riskier abortions.
The group is asking a Maricopa County Superior Court judge to block implementation of the new law until its constitutionality can be determined.
"Planned Parenthood Arizona is committed to ensuring women and families in this state have access to the comprehensive reproductive care they need," Bryan Howard, president and CEO of the organization, says. "We believe the regulations should not be put into place until the court rules on the legality of these onerous laws."
The law is set to take effect July 20.