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Judge halts new protections for Arkansas babies


Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge Associated Press/Photo by Andrew DeMillo (file)

Judge halts new protections for Arkansas babies

Laws that would safeguard the unborn from being dismembered in the womb or aborted because of their sex cannot take effect as planned, a federal judge ruled this week. The Arkansas legislature passed the laws in 2017, and they took effect just hours before U.S. District Judge Kristine Baker issued a two-week injunction against their enforcement on Tuesday.

What was the judge’s reasoning? Baker originally shot down the laws as unconstitutional in 2017. The 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals recently ordered her to reconsider her earlier ruling based on a Supreme Court opinion in an abortion case over the summer. But Baker said she thinks the laws are still unconstitutional. Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge said she expects the state to successfully defend the laws on appeal.

Dig deeper: Read Harvest Prude’s report on June Medical Services v. Russo, the summer’s landmark abortion case at the Supreme Court.


Lynde Langdon

Lynde is a WORLD Digital’s managing editor. She is a graduate of World Journalism Institute, the Missouri School of Journalism, and the University of Missouri–St. Louis. Lynde resides with her family in Wichita, Kan.

@lmlangdon

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