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S.D. officials weigh next action on abortion law

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — South Dakota officials must decide their next step after a federal judge said the state's newest abortion law is likely unconstitutional and could not take effect Friday.

The law would require women seeking abortions to face a three-day waiting period — the nation's longest — and undergo counseling at pregnancy help centers that discourage abortion.

U.S. District Chief Judge Karen Schreier on Thursday granted Planned Parenthood's preliminary injunction, making the law invalid while it's being challenged in court.

Planned Parenthood in its lawsuit said the legislation violates a woman's constitutional right to abortion established under the 1973 Roe vs. Wade ruling.

In her written ruling Thursday, Schreier said that requiring women to attend pregnancy help centers would create an undue burden. "Forcing a woman to divulge to a stranger at a pregnancy help center the fact that she has chosen to undergo an abortion humiliates and degrades her as a human being," she wrote.

kansas' rules blocked: U.S. District Judge Carlos Murguia on Friday temporarily blocked Kansas from enforcing new abortion regulations that would have prevented two of the state's three abortion providers from continuing to terminate pregnancies. The injunction will remain in effect until a trial is held in a lawsuit challenging the rules, which require hospitals, clinics and doctor's offices to obtain an annual license from the Kansas Department of Health and Environment to perform more than five nonemergency abortions in a month.

S.D. officials weigh next action on abortion law 07/01/11 [Last modified: Friday, July 1, 2011 11:57pm]

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