When Judge Tanya Walton Pratt issued a permanent injunction today against Indiana’s pro-life law HEA 1337 she was following through on the threat contained when she issued her preliminary injunction in June 2016. At the time Judge Pratt, reliably pro-abortion, made it abundantly clear she would likely find the law unconstitutional.
And so she did today in a 22-page decision.
The state has 30 days to decide whether to appeal.
HEA 1337, signed into law by pro-life Governor and now Vice President Mike Pence, bans abortions based on a prenatal diagnosis of disabilities such as Down syndrome. HEA 1337 also protects unborn babies who would be aborted because of their gender (almost always girls). In addition the law requires that the remains of aborted babies be disposed of in a dignified fashion.
Pratt concluded, “The United States Supreme Court has stated in categorical terms that a state may not prohibit any woman from making the ultimate decision to terminate her pregnancy before viability.”
Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky filed suit in April 2016 in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana. The law signed in March and was scheduled to go into effect July 1.
According to Indiana Right to Life, HEA 1337 “puts into law Hoosiers’ longstanding values that babies shouldn’t be aborted because of disability, gender or race. In addition, it provides perinatal hospice information to parents who receive a negative prenatal diagnosis. It imposes respectful disposal methods of aborted fetal remains so that baby body parts aren’t comingled with gall bladders and treated as medical waste. It prohibits the transportation of an aborted baby into or out of Indiana except for the purpose of final disposition. It also increases informed consent for women by prohibiting group counseling before an abortion so that the woman has an opportunity to discuss the upcoming abortion procedure in private.”
North Dakota is the only other state that prohibits abortions based on a prenatal diagnosis of disabilities such as Down syndrome.
However Ohio’s S.B. 164–the Down Syndrome Non-Discrimination Act–is working its way through the legislative process.
LifeNews.com Note: Dave Andrusko is the editor of National Right to Life News and an author and editor of several books on abortion topics. This post originally appeared in at National Right to Life News Today —- an online column on pro-life issues.