The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has struck dow
n Idaho's ban on abortions after 20 weeks
or pregnancy because it prohibits abortions before viability of the fetus, the standard applied by the 8th Circuit this week in striking down Arkansas's 12-week abortion ban.
The 9th Circuit also invalidated the Idaho requirement that women undergo second trimester abortions in hospitals. Talking Points Memo, which has the full text of the decision, said the court deemed this an undue burden.
The Arkansas legislature passed a 20-week abortion ban over Gov. Mike Beebe's veto in 2013. It has not been challenged in court. Only a handful of such abortions are performed in the state each year, normally for complicated pregnancies where there are questions about health of the fetus or mother. The 12-week abortion ban was challenged by doctors who provide abortions. A challenge of the 20-week ban would have legal support — as the 12-week challenge did — but it would require a plaintiff restricted by the law.