Court Stops New Tennessee Heartbeat Abortion Ban From Taking Effect

In remarks just before signing the bill into law, Governor Lee defended the measure by saying that “life is precious and everything that is precious is worth protecting.”

Pro-Life Sign
Pro-lifers demonstrate in the 39th Annual March for Life in Washington, D.C., Jan. 23, 2012. | (Photo: The Christian Post)

Michael Gryboski of Christian Post filed a report about a U.S. District Judge issuing a restraining order to halt a Tennessee pro-life law. 

A judge blocked a new Tennessee law that would ban abortion in most circumstances once a fetal heartbeat is detected, which is often around six weeks into a pregnancy.

Governor Bill Lee signed House Bill 2263, also known as Senate Bill 2196, into law on Monday, which included an exemption for life-threatening medical emergency.

Judge William Campbell of the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee issued a temporary restraining order soon after that will last until July 27, pending a possible future order.

Campbell argued that the pro-choice plaintiffs, who had filed legal action against the legislation before it had become law, had shown that “they will suffer immediate and irreparable injury, harm, loss, or damage if injunctive relief is not granted pending a preliminary injunction hearing.”

“The Act will immediately impact patients seeking abortions and imposes criminal sanctions on abortion providers. The time-sensitive nature of the procedure also weighs in favor of injunctive relief pending a preliminary injunction hearing,” concluded the judge.

The American Civil Liberties Union, who filed suit against the law along with the Center for Reproductive Rights, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, and others, celebrated the temporary restraining order.

“This is a critical win for people in Tennessee who will not lose access to their constitutional right to abortion,” said Anjali Dalal, senior staff attorney at the ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project, in a statement.

“But we cannot lose sight of the big picture: that it took a court order to stop these politicians from pursuing a ruthless anti-abortion agenda in the middle of a pandemic, passing a ban that would disproportionately harm Black and brown people.”

In remarks just before signing the bill into law, Governor Lee defended the measure by saying that “life is precious and everything that is precious is worth protecting.”

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