Moments ago, a federal Judge issued a temporary restraining order against a Mississippi law that would have closed the state’s only abortion clinic. The law, which went into effect today, requires doctors at the clinic to get admitting privileges to local hospitals. The doctors have tried to get those privileges since the governor signed the law in April, but no hospital has granted them. Mississippi was about to become the first state in the nation to effectively ban the constitutionally protected medical service of abortion.
Judge Daniel P. Jordan ruled that the clinic is likely to succeed in proving that Mississippi’s law is unconstitutional. He wrote:
In this case, Plaintiffs have offered evidence—including quotes from significant legislative and executive officers—that the Act’s purpose is to eliminate abortions in Mississippi. They likewise submitted evidence that no safety or health concerns motivated its passage. This evidence has not yet been rebutted.
The order lasts until July 11, when the court will hear the clinic’s request for a permanent injunction of the law. Meanwhile, all our commenters who said that state Rep. Bubba Carpenter’s boasting about the end of abortion in Mississippi was valuable legal evidence, you appear to have been right.