Federal Court Strikes Down Tennessee Abortion Waiting Period Law

Federal Court Strikes Down Tennessee Abortion Waiting Period Law

On Wednesday a federal district court struck down a 2015 Tennessee law that required a 48-hour waiting period before women can obtain an abortion.

A Ronald Reagan nominee, Judge Bernard Friedman, of U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee, Nashville Division, wrote that the mandatory waiting period is unconstitutional:

The evidence clearly shows that almost all women are quite certain of their decisions by the time they appear for their first appointment and that they do not benefit, emotionally or otherwise, from being required to wait before undergoing the procedure.

Friedman continued the law’s proponents did not show it served the purpose of “protecting fetal life or benefitting women’s mental and emotional health”:

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Fetal life is not protected because there is no evidence that patients who do not return to an abortion provider for the second appointment (i.e., for the procedure) fail to do so because

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