Yesterday, Planned Parenthood, two abortion doctors and others filed a lawsuit challenging three sets of Arizona laws providing for the health and safety of women considering an abortion:

  • Informed consent requirement. Twenty-four hours before a woman has an abortion, the law requires she be given information about the risks and alternatives before having an abortion. The 24-hour period ensures the woman is able to consider the facts before making her final decision to have an abortion.
  • Telemedicine ban. Chemical abortions may not be provided via telemedicine. This ensures a woman has a doctor present when she considers whether to take the abortion pill. Otherwise, the doctor would be in a separate location, perhaps many miles away authorizing the woman to be given the abortion pills.
  • Non-doctor prohibition. Non-doctors like nurse practitioners, physician assistants and others may not provide or perform an abortion.

Many pro-life laws like these have been enacted in states through the country, with courts generally upholding them. This trend in the courts has paralleled the many polls showing Americans believe abortion should be regulated, especially for women’s health and safety.

In response, the abortion industry has had to invent new legal strategies to try to overturn these laws. Therefore, in addition to challenging each set of laws individually, the Arizona lawsuit also alleges that the three sets of laws taken cumulatively is what restrict women’s constitutional right to have an abortion.

The real problem is that the abortion industry is struggling to find doctors willing to provide or perform abortions. Hence, Planned Parenthood wants non-doctors to be able to perform surgical abortions. They want to be able to have a doctor in Phoenix talk to a woman in Yuma or Page over the Internet then have a medical assistant or some individual press a button to pop out the abortion pills.

Women deserve better. Women deserve to have only licensed doctors performing abortions and have the doctor present when she is considering whether to have an abortion.

Interestingly, the lawsuit claims that these laws have led to the closure of four Planned Parenthood abortion clinics (Yuma, Goodyear, Prescott Valley, and Chandler), and have led to a 40% reduction in the number of abortions provided by Planned Parenthood.

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich issued this statement regarding the lawsuit:

Planned Parenthood might be disappointed its business model is failing, but we’re talking about human beings, not appliances. Planned Parenthood should work to change the law if it doesn’t like the policies, not rely on the courts to do its bidding. I will defend the State vigorously in this lawsuit.”

Thank you General Brnovich for your commitment to vigorously defend this lawsuit. Our team will be monitoring the lawsuit every step of the way and participating in any way possible.

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