Oct 31, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Judge upholds decision to temporarily block North Dakota's abortion ban

Photo of abortion rights protesters holding signs that say "My abortion saved my life"

Abortion rights advocates protest in front of the Supreme Court on June 26, 2022 in Washington, D.C. Photo: Anna Moneymaker via Getty Images

A North Dakota judge affirmed on Monday his previous decision to temporarily block the state's abortion ban while an abortion clinic's legal challenge plays out, AP reports.

Why it matters: The move comes after the state Supreme Court ordered the judge to reevaluate whether he made the "appropriate" decision in rejecting the North Dakota attorney general's request to let the trigger ban take effect amid the lawsuit brought by the Red River Women’s Clinic of Fargo.

  • The law bans abortions except in cases where the procedure is needed to prevent a pregnant person's death.
  • The state Supreme Court issued the order after agreeing with North Dakota Attorney General Drew Wrigley's argument that Judge Bruce Romanick failed to consider the clinic's likelihood of prevailing in the suit.

Driving the news: Romanick upheld his earlier ruling on Monday, which stated that he cannot consider the clinic's chances of winning without hearing proper arguments from both sides, per AP.

The big picture: The Red River clinic, the last remaining abortion provider in North Dakota, closed its sole location in Fargo after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. The clinic moved across the state line to nearby Moorhead, Minnesota.

  • Its lawsuit argues that the ban violates the North Dakota constitution.

Go deeper: Dozens of clinics stopped offering abortions after Dobbs decision

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