Dec 8, 2023
2 mins read
2 mins read

A Pregnant Woman in Kentucky Sues for the Option to Seek an Abortion

A Pregnant Woman in Kentucky Sues for the Option to Seek an Abortion

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (NEWSnet/AP) — A pregnant woman in Kentucky filed a lawsuit Friday demanding the right to an abortion, despite that state's restrictions involving such procedures.

It's the second major legal challenge in days to sweeping abortion bans that have gone into effect in more than a dozen U.S. states in the past year.

The suit, filed in Jefferson County Circuit Court in Louisville, says Kentucky’s near-total prohibition against abortion violates the plaintiff’s rights to privacy and self-determination under the state constitution.

The plaintiff, identified as Jane Doe, is about eight weeks pregnant. She wants to have an abortion in Kentucky but cannot legally do so because of the state’s ban, the suit said.

She is seeking class-action status to include other Kentuckians who are or will become pregnant and want to have an abortion.

“This is my decision — not the government’s or any other person’s,” the plaintiff said in a news release Friday issued by the American Civil Liberties Union, one of the groups backing her challenge. “I am bringing this lawsuit because I firmly believe that everyone should have the ability to make their own decisions about their pregnancies.”

Others involved in the suit include Planned Parenthood.

Kentucky’s legal challenge revolves around Kentucky’s near-total trigger law ban and a separate six-week ban — both passed by the state’s GOP-dominated Legislature. The trigger law, passed in 2019, took effect when Roe v. Wade was overturned. It bans abortions except when carried out to save the life of the patient or to prevent disabling injury. It does not include exceptions for cases of rape or incest.

Republican state Attorney General Daniel Cameron’s office said it is reviewing the suit, but offered no other comments. Cameron’s office has defended the state’s anti-abortion laws in other court proceedings.

On Thursday, a judge in Texas gave a pregnant woman whose fetus has a fatal diagnosis permission to get an abortion by restricting that state from enforcing its ban on her for 14 days. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton insisted that the court order would not insulate any medical practitioners from civil and criminal liabilities in the state.

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