Judge DENIES Planned Parenthood Plea Over Abortion Ruling

On Friday, an Arizona judge rejected a plea from Planned Parenthood to suspend a ruling halting all abortions in the state.

Last week, Pima County Superior Court Judge Kellie Johnson announced the decision to enforce “a pre-statehood law” that would criminalize abortions.

Planned Parenthood attempted to appeal the ruling on Friday, but it was denied by Johnson.

Johnson had said abortion rights groups would likely not succeed in appealing the decision, meaning the ban could remain enforceable.

After the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade in June, Arizona’s ruling banned abortion providers from performing the procedures.

Last week, Johnson ruled that in order to enforce the law criminalizing abortion, a 1973 injunction must be lifted.

Republican Attorney General Mark Brnovich had sought the order lifting the injunction. His office told Johnson that there was no legal reason to block the old law because there is no constitutional right to obtain an abortion.

Planned Parenthood and its Arizona affiliate urged Johnson to suspend the ruling while they seek an appeal.

They “argued that laws enacted by the state Legislature in the ensuing 50 years should take precedence,” reported GPB News.

Until Johnson’s ruling, abortions were legal in Arizona until the fetus was viable, approximately around 24 weeks.

On Saturday, a law enacted by the state Legislature last spring banning abortion at 15 weeks took effect.

Brittany Fonteno, Planned Parenthood of Arizona President and CEO, said she was “outraged” by the ruling.

“It is impermissible that Arizonans are waking up each morning to their elected officials making conflicting statements about which laws are in effect or claiming that they do not know, and yet the court has refused to provide any clarity or relief,” she said.

The Civil War-era law penalizes doctors or anyone else who assists in an abortion with a sentence of two to five years in prison.

Last year, the Legislature repealed a law that allowed charges against women who seek abortions.

Clinics in Arizona have reportedly been referring patients to providers in California and New Mexico since Johnson lifted the injunction.

Following the overturn of Roe, 13 other states have banned abortions.