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Abortion rights anti-abortion rights demonstrators protest in Columbia, South Carolina on Feb. 17. Photo: Sean Rayford/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

A federal judge on Friday temporarily suspended a new South Carolina law that bans most abortions in the state, according to AP.

Why it matters: The 14-day suspension comes a day after South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster signed the bill into law and Planned Parenthood filed a lawsuit.

Details: The "South Carolina Fetal Heartbeat and Protection from Abortion Act" requires physicians to check for a heartbeat in the fetus, Axios' Shawna Chen reports.

  • If a heartbeat is detected — which typically occurs between six and eight weeks after conception — an abortion can be pursued only if the pregnancy was the result of rape or incest, or if the pregnant person's life is in danger.
  • In cases of rape or incest, doctors who offer the procedure are required to report the crime to local law enforcement.
  • A pregnant person would not be punished for having an illegal abortion, but anyone who performs the operation may be charged with a felony, sentenced up to two years in jail and fined $10,000 if found guilty.

The big picture: U.S. District Court Judge Mary Geiger Lewi will renew the suspension until she can hold a more substantial hearing in March, according to AP.

  • Planned Parenthood has requested that the law not be enforced until after its lawsuit against South Carolina makes it way through the courts.
  • Planned Parenthood and the Center for Reproductive Rights said in court documents that more than 75 women are scheduled to have abortions in the state over the next three days, and most of the abortions would be banned under the new law, AP reported.

Go deeper

South Carolina governor signs bill banning most abortions in the state

The South Carolina statehouse. Photo: Epics via Getty Images

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster (R) signed a bill into law on Thursday banning most abortions in the state.

Driving the news: Planned Parenthood filed a lawsuit in response, effectively blocking the measure from going into effect.

5 hours ago - Health

Fauci: Omicron variant will "inevitably" be found in U.S.

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, cautioned on Sunday that the COVID-19 Omicron variant will "inevitably" be found in the United States.

Driving the news: Fauci, Biden's chief medical adviser, told ABC's George Stephanopoulos on "This Week" that U.S. officials will meet with colleagues from South Africa later on Sunday to try to determine the severity of the cases, as countries scramble to learn more about the variant.

Updated 7 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Dems fear supply-chain blame

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

As supply-chain kinks drive up prices and disrupt holiday shopping, Democrats are scrambling to show action and deflect blame.

Why it matters: With their party controlling both the White House and Capitol, vulnerable Democrats worry supply-chain snafus will hurt them in next year's midterms.