Abortion advocates in Oklahoma lost a round in court this week when a judge rejected their argument against a state law requiring abortion clinics to provide information to help protect young rape victims.
Oklahoma County District Judge Thomas Prince rejected a request from Larry A. Burns and the Center for Reproductive Rights to rule the new law unconstitutional Wednesday, according to the Associated Press. However, the judge did uphold an Oklahoma Supreme Court order that stops the law from taking effect until the case is fully resolved, the AP reports.
Burns, an abortion doctor in Norman, Oklahoma, and his pro-abortion attorneys argued that the law violates a state constitutional requirement that legislation cover a single subject, according to Courthouse News Service. Judge Prince rejected the argument, ruling that the four sections of the law are “germane,” according to the report.
The report details the provisions of Senate Bill 642:
Section 1 levies criminal and civil penalties for helping a minor get an abortion without parental consent;
Section 2 requires girls younger than 14 to submit fetal tissue samples to the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation for rape investigation;
Section 3 allows the Department of Health to conduct unannounced searches of abortion facilities;
Section 4 deems anyone who violates S.B. 642 guilty of a felony, punishable by fines of up $100,000 per day of violation.
Burns and his pro-abortion attorneys have challenged pro-life laws in Oklahoma at least eight times since 2010, according to the report. Burns also challenged the state’s admitting privileges law and its ultrasound law, which the courts struck down.
In another case, an Oklahoma district judge also put on hold a state law to ban dismemberment abortions that tear babies limb from limb in October, according to a local news report. The law made Oklahoma the second state in the nation to protect unborn children from dismemberment abortions. Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback signed similar legislation prohibiting dismemberment abortions in April.
A third pro-life law passed in Oklahoma earlier this year to increase the waiting period for abortion from 24 hours to 72 hours, LifeNews.com previously reported. That law also was challenged, but an Oklahoma district judge refused to delay that law, according to the report.
State Sen. Greg Treat, R-Oklahoma City, who authored several of the bills, said: “In Oklahoma, we have a waiting period for divorce of 10 days. If there are minor children it is 90 days. We should also take it very seriously when we’re talking about the irrevocable decision of abortion.”