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More women join lawsuit against Texas' restrictive abortion law

The suit wants clarity in Texas' abortion laws, which are leaving doctors hesitant to provide abortions even in extreme cases.
Demonstrators at the federal courthouse in Austin, Texas
Posted at 11:20 PM, May 22, 2023

Three more women have joined a lawsuit in Texas seeking to put a hold on certain abortion restrictions in the state.

The suit, filed by the Center for Reproductive Rights in state court in early March, claims the the law in Texas is creating situations that threaten the lives of pregnant women because doctors fear repercussions for assisting with abortion care. Plaintiffs want an emergency hold placed on certain restrictions in Texas' abortion law.

Five women were part of the initial suit, and said their pregnancies endangered their lives.

 

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Texas law carries narrow exceptions that allow abortion to "avert the woman's death or a serious risk of substantial and irreversible physical impairment of a major bodily function."

But doctors risk fines of up to $100,000 and potential life sentences in prison for performing abortions.

The plaintiffs in the case say the law is written too vaguely, and want the language to be clarified.

Attorneys in the case consider it a model that may be used to challenge other states' abortion restrictions. The Center For Reproductive Rights says it is considering similar suits in other states.

Mapping by health policy research group KFF shows of the states with abortion bans or restrictions, six don't include exceptions for the health of the mother: Arkansas, Idaho, Mississippi, Oklahoma, South Dakota and Wisconsin.

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