USA – South Carolina abortion ban suspended one day after passage

South Carolina’s new law banning almost all abortions was suspended by a federal judge on its second day in effect. Judge Mary Geiger Lewis put a 14-day temporary restraining order on the law and will renew it until she can hold a more substantial hearing on March 9. Planned Parenthood has requested that the law not be enforced until their lawsuit against South Carolina is resolved. The “South Carolina Fetal Heartbeat and Protection from Abortion Act ” is depressingly similar to laws previously passed by a dozen other US states whose legislature is dominated by anti-abortion (usually) Republicans. All these laws were stopped from taking effect by Federal judges because Federal law takes precedence over state law.

Judge Lewis explained this by saying that the new law was far more strict than the current US Supreme Court rulings, which are the ones she must abide by. Planned Parenthood’s lawyers phrased it a bit more bluntly: South Carolina, they said, is “openly flouting [Federal] law”.

SOURCE: Delta Optimist, by Canadian Press, 19 February 2021.