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Abortion rights groups take up the fight in the states.

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The battle over abortion shifted to the states on Monday as a weekend of furious protest and prayerful thanksgiving in the wake of the Supreme Court’s Roe …
The battle over abortion shifted to the states on Monday as a weekend of furious protest and prayerful thanksgiving in the wake of the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade reversal gave way to a coast-to-coast wave of lawsuits, legislation and pitched political fights. With conservatives in roughly half of the states moving swiftly to end or dramatically restrict reproductive rights and liberals in roughly 20 more scrambling to preserve them, the national debate suddenly fragmented into a contentious patchwork, with lawyers and lawmakers arguing the fine points of state constitutions and statutes. Abortion rights advocates in Kentucky, Louisiana, Texas, Idaho and Mississippi sued on Monday to halt or delay bans on abortion after Arizona advocates filed a similar court challenge over the weekend. In South Carolina, Planned Parenthood South Atlantic moved to withdraw a federal court challenge to a ban there, but apparently only so the organization could file a fresh challenge in state courts instead. To understand why, one need only to look at Louisiana and Utah, where judges on Monday temporarily blocked enforcement of laws that would have banned abortion. Abortion rights advocates are coalescing around a strategy of asking courts for temporary injunctions that at the very least can buy time and allow abortions to proceed in the short term. One of Louisiana’s three clinics already said Monday that it would reopen.
“It’s all about the states from here on out,” Jessie Hill, a law professor at Case Western Reserve University who has worked on abortion rights cases, said. “We can fantasize about federal solutions to this issue or nationwide settlements of the abortion question, but I think that after Dobbs, I don’t see a lot of possibilities at the federal level.”
Ms. Hill is part of a team of lawyers challenging in federal court an Ohio law that bans abortions after about six weeks of pregnancy. A judge allowed that law to take effect after the Supreme Court ruling. But Ms. Hill added that she believes protections for individual rights in Ohio’s constitution could make for a compelling argument that abortion is protected in the state. In Florida, providers on Monday deployed similar arguments in a court hearing, contending that privacy rights in the state’s constitution pre-empted a new state ban on the procedure after 15 weeks of pregnancy. The Louisiana district court temporarily blocked “trigger” laws that would have criminalized nearly all abortions after health providers argued that the bans were unenforceable and vague and violated the state’s constitution.

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