Supreme Court won’t look at reinstating Arizona’s 20-week abortion ban

The Supreme Court  opted Monday not to review Arizona's struck-down abortion restrictions — a decision that could have a bearing on a plethora of new abortion restrictions across the country.

From Robert Barnes:

The Supreme Court on Monday declined to revive Arizona’s new restrictions on abortion, turning away a request that the justices review an appeals court ruling that had struck down a ban on most abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.

The Supreme Court, as is its custom, gave no reason for declining to take the case.

Arizona’s ban is the first to reach the high court from a batch of state laws passed around the country that restrict abortion after 20 weeks, which is before a fetus is considered to be viable outside the womb. That has been the standard the Supreme Court set for when government may disallow abortion.

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (R) signed the ban into law in April 2012, and nine other states have similar bans.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said last year such bans violate the standards set by the Supreme Court in Roe v. Wade.

Republicans in Congress and in many states around the country are passing new abortion restrictions, including a 20-week abortion ban that passed in the GOP-controlled House last year.

One particularly prominent case that is working its way through the courts is Texas's new abortion restrictions, some of which were ruled unconstitutional by a district judge last year. A federal appeals court heard the state's appeal of that ruling last week.

Aaron Blake covers national politics and writes regularly for The Fix.

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Aaron Blake · January 13, 2014